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OF AN i V| 










and for upwards op twbmty years a magistratb op thb head officb of 

dublin policb. 


Sdre tamu nihil est, niai te sciate boo sdat alter."— Pirsius. 







In submitting the following pages to the considera- 
tion of the public, I am influenced by a desire to ex- 
tend the appetite which is so greedy in devouring 
fiction^to some morsels of fact. 

Several of my narratives refer to incidents which, 
in their disclosures, might occasion disagreeable 
feelings to the parties or to their kindred. In such 
cases, I shall adopt fictitious names ; but in all the 
details offered to the reader, I shall include nothing 
which I do not firmly believe or personally know to 
be strictly true. To the former class must be referred 
several anecdotes derived from parental lips, and 
referring to years previous to my birth. In a theatre, 
the performers are neither applauded nor hissed from 
behind the scenes. The judgment which they have 
to encounter is that of the audience. As a literary 
manager, I shall leave each tragic or comic incident 
to the unbiassed opinion and criticism of my readers. 
I shall occasionally have to encounter the danger 
arising from allowing a great culprit to escape, or b 
virtuous and estimable individual to tm^L^T^ci \£^%- 

vi Preface* 

fortune. In this respect the writer of fiction pos- 
Besses a vast advantage. He can lavish every worldly 
blessing on the deserving, and allot the direst punish>- 
ments to vice and crime. But when we have to deal 
with stern realities, we may regret the occurrence of 
a fact which leaves guilt undetected and innocence in 
deep affliction. I can, however, safely assert, upon 
the experience of a long professional and official life, 
that vice seldom attains to great worldly prosperity, 
and that worth and integrity are rarely subjected to 
utter destitution* 

It is difficult to classify anecdotes or reminiscences 
which are not connected with each other. The course 
I propose to adopt is to lay before my readers the 
narratives which I have derived from sources anterior 
to my birth, from lips truthful and occasionally 
humorous, but now silent for ever. I shall reserve, 
as far as possible, my own personal recollections for 
the latter part of this publication, in the hope that 
the amusement and information obtained from others, 
may soften the critical reader to an indulgent recep- 
tion of the portion peculiarly connected with myself. 
I may remark that some anecdotes in which my 
name is introduced have been very extensively pub- 
lished in several periodicals. I accord to their authors 
my willing testimony as to their great imaginative 
power^ for in the statements concerning me there is 
not one word of truth. My friend, Mr. Fitzpatrick, 
in his recent productions of " The Sham Squire *' 
and " Ireland before the Union," has mentioned me 

Preface. vii 

as the source from which he derived the particulars 
of a few incidents in those interesting works. His 
nnexaggerated correctness forms a strong contrast 
to the flippant fictions of others. However, when my 
name is brought before the public, in reference either 
to fiction or fact, it affords me some apology for 
appearing in proprid persona, 

I cannot refrain from subjoining to this preface, 
with the permission of the writer, a letter which I 
received soon after the publication of the first edi- 

F. T. P. 

Dublin Castle, 

29th October, 1875, 

Deab Ma. Pobteb, 

'^ I must thank you for the gratification and amusement 
Lady Burke and I have found in your " Gleanings." The 
stories are fuU of interest, and the anecdotes are told with 
wit, humour, and piquancy. The volume is one of the 
cleverest books I have read this long time.* 


Yours very truly, 




Lonergan's Case — Old Prisons 1 

Yesey and Keogh , , , 6 

Mary Tudor 16 


The Birth of a Word — A Letter of Introdaction — The 

Honor of Knighthood 25 

A Millionaire 81 


The Ship Street Diamond— Second-hand Plate—The Silver 
Slab- Law's Window— Old Newgate .... 33 

Gonne*s Watch 42 

The Major 49 


Committals — A Barber Wanted— Dwyer the Rebel — An Ex- 
traordinary Inqnest — Sergeant Greene's Horse — Christy 
Haghes — The Police Clerks — Recorder Walker — ^The 
Police Statutes — Preamble — A Benefit Society Case — 
Police Becraits — A Bom Soldier ... , VI 

X Contents. 


Mendicancy . 71 

Carriage Court Cases-^Dablin Carmen .... 77 


A Gratuitous Jaunt— The Portuguese Postillion— A Few 
Hyperboles — Miscellaneous Summonses ... 88 


Dogs — Whipping Young Thieves— Garden Robbers— Refor- 
matories — Apologies for Violence— Trespassers on a 
Nunnery 95 

Terry DriscoU's Fiction— Bridget Laffan— Sailors— Fisher 103 

A Duper Duped 110 

Who threw the Bottle ?~ Excise and Customs Cases . . 119 


John Sergeant — The Magisterial Offices — ^Two Murders — 
One Reprieved— Delahunt's Crimes . . . .127 


Murder of Mr. Little — Detective Inefficiency — Individual 
Efficiency— A False Accusation Exposed— Extraordinary 
Gratitude — A Salutary Reformation— A Charge of Felony 
— Poor Puss, who shot her? — Baxter and Barnes • 139 


A Run to Connaught — A Present — A Puzzle — Moll Raffle — 
A LucW Accusation — Crown Witnesses — Who blew up 
King William ? — Surgical Assistance — A Rejected Suitor 
—George Robins— The Greek Count: The Katp— The 
ChDd of the AJJe^— The Lucky Shot .... 153 

Contents, xi 


O'Connell — Smith O'Brien and Meagher — John Mitchel — In- 
formers—The Close of 1848— The Military— A French 
View of Popalftr Commotions ] 69 


Cholera: An Impatient Patient; Good News! only Ty|^as 
Fever — ^Royal Visits — Scotch Superiority strongly as- 
serted — A Police Bill stigmatised— Leave of Absence — 
The Rhine— The Rhineland 186 


Brnssels— Royal Children — The Great Exhibition in London 
— Home Again : A Preacher — Unlucky Rioters— Visit to 
Paris — Michel Perrin 202 

The Count or Convict, which ? ^The Fawn's Escape . . 231 

The Count de Coney — ^Dumas — A Threatened Suicide . 251 


Dargan*s Exhibition — A Bell and Knocker — ^Lord Gough — 
Father Pecherine's Case — Assaults and Thefts — The City 
Militia— A Scald quickly cured — Sailors leaving their 
Ship 262 


Effects of Enlistment — Martial Tendencies — The She Bar? 
ra^ks — The Dublin Garrison — An Artillery Amazon — 
A Colonel of Dragoons — Donnybrook Fair — The Liquor 
Traffic .277 


The College Row — The Cook Street Printer — A Question and 
Answer — A Barrister — An Attorney — Gibraltar . • 291 

V Gibraltar, continued .,..»».. ^^ 

xii Cantmts, 


Gibraltar, confinti«f— Departure for Home — Charity, real Clia- 
rity — A Death and Funeral — The Bay of Biscay again — 
At Home : Leisure no Pleasure —A Review • . 320 ^ 

- ^3/^ 

A Dublin Dentist 332 


A Trip to the North —Metrical Attempts— Contrasts— Paris : 
A Fair— A Review — Nadar's Balloon— Sport, Turf, Bbx- 
ing— Liquor Vehicles— No Hods — A Horse, a Dog, 
Rats 346 


Contrasts— French Kitchens— Shops and Signs — The Seine- 
Trees and Flowers— A Pretty Thief— French Wit- 
French Silver — ^The Hotel des Invalides • . • 860 


Gain preferred to Glory — Curious Inscriptions — Former 
Gambling — An Assault — French Charity — A Letter to 
Heaven 376 

Father Prout .382 


A French Land Murder— Irishmen, French Ecclesiastics- 
Algerian Productions— Bird Charming— Brittany— Cha- 
teaabriand 387 

The Arran Islands— Circuit Reminiscences— Conclusion . 396 




Although it is probable that I may bring before my 
readers an incident or two of a more remote date, I shall' 
commence with the narrative of an alleged crime and its 
supposed punishment, which has been adverted to by 
Sir Jonah Barrington in his "Personal Recollections," 
Vol. I., page 52, and in the description of which he has^ 
lapsed into considerable inaccuracy. According to him, 
the name of the person chiefly concerned was ** Lanegan ;" 
but in that respect there is a positive error ; for by exa- 
mining the records of the Crown Office, (Ireland,) I find 
the name, as my father had frequently stated to me, to 
be " Lonergan." He was a young man who had been 
educated at the school of the Rev, Eugene M'Kenna, of 
Raheny, in the County of Dublin, and from that estab- 
lishment entered Trinity College, Dublin, in th^ year 
1773. During his undergraduate course, he resided with 
Mr. M*Kenna, and acted as an assistant in the school. 
In 1777, having finished his University studies, he became 
a tutor in the family of Mr. Thomas O'Flaherty, of Castle- 
field, in the County of Kilkenny. That gentleman was 
singularly unfortunate in having married a woman of 
most depraved tendencies. She engaged in an intrigue 
with Lonergan, and on the 28th of June, 1778, Mr. 
O'Flaherty died under circumstances which occasioned 
the arrest of Lonergan, on a charge oi Viasiiv^ ^ov^orsi^^ 

2 Twenty Years^ Recollections, 

him. Tbe woman evaded arrest and escaped to a foreign 
country. Some time must have elapsed between the 
commission of the crime and the apprehension of the 
accused party, for it was not until the Summer Assizes of 
Kilkenny, in 1781, that Lonergan was arraigned for Petit 
Treason^ the offence being considered by the law, as it 
then existed, as more aggravated than murder, inasmuch 
as he was in the domestic service of the man whom he 
was alleged to have destroyed. He succeeded, on certain 
legal grounds, in postponing his trial ; but in the ensuing 
term a writ of certiorari issued, and the indictment was 
removed to the Court of King's Bench. A trial at bar 
was held on November 12th, 1781, the jury having been 
brought up from Kilkenny. The prisoner was convicted, 
and sentenced to be hanged and quartered on the 24th 
of the aforesaid month, and the sheriffs of the City of 
Dublin were directed to have the sentence carried into 
effect. At the time of his conviction, the prisoner de- 
clared that he was innocent of the crime ; but he ad- 
mitted that he bought arsenic at the instance of Mrs, 
O'Elaherty, who, according to his statement, told him 
that she intended to use it in destroying rats. He did 
not deny the imputation of an adulterous intrigue with 
her. The Rev. Mr. M*Kenna did not forget his former 
pupil and assistant. He visited him in prison, testified 
to his character in very favorable terms at the trial, and, 
after condemnation, was assiduous in preparing him to 
meet his impending doom with Christian resignation. 
He determined to attend him to the termination of his 
sufferihgs, and to pay the last duties to his remains. 
M'Kenna was married to a cousin of my father, and he 
was on terms of the closest intimacy with our family. 
My father resided in Skinner liow, (now Christ Church 
Place,) Dublin ; and at the period to which this narrative 
refers, he was in the prime of life — tall, vigorous, and 
active. He was also serjeant of the grenadier company 
of the Dublin Volunteers. He had known the unhappy 
Lonergan during the peaceful and comparative innocent 
days that the laiter had ^pent at Raheny. He pitied the 

LonergavLS Case, 8 

miserable fate of the culprit, doubted his guilt, and sym- 
pathized with the worthy man whose pious solicitude 
and friendship still sought to console the spirit that was 
so soon to pass away. On the evening before the execu- 
tion, M*Kenna remained with the condemned as long as 
the regulations of the prison permitted. He then betook 
himself to my father's house, where he proposed to stay 
until the earliest hour of the morning at which he could 
be admitted to the gaol. Having mentioned that he 
would not fail to attend Lonergan to the consummation 
of his fate, in compliance with the culprit's request, he 
was informed by my father that he should also be at the 
execution, for that owing to the paucity of regular troops 
in Dublin, the sheriff had made a requisition for a guard 
of the Volunteers, and that the grenadier company were 
to attend at Baggot Street, (the Tyburn of Dublin,) to 
which place the prisoner was to be escorted from Thomas 
Street by a troop of cavalry. 

Accordingly, on the 24th November, 1781, Lonergan, 
having briefly but very distinctly denied any participation 
in the crime for which he was condemned, was hanged by 
the withdrawal of the cart from beneath the gallows to 
which the halter was attached, and although he received 
no drop, his sufferings did not seem to be very acute. He 
almost immediately ceased to struggle, and life appeared 
to be extinct. The weather was extremely inclement; 
and when the body had been suspended for about twenty 
minutes, the sheriff acceded to a suggestion that it might 
be cut down, There was some difficulty in getting at the 
rope so as to cut it with a knife. M'Kenna remarked this 
to my father, who, drawing his short, slightly curved, and 
very sharp hanger, directed the cart to be backed towards 
the body. Then, springing up on the cart, he struck the 
rope where it crossed the beam, and severed it at once. A 
coffin was brought forward from a hearse which was in 
waiting. The sheriff directed the cap to be removed, and 
the body to be turned with the face down. Then he 
handed a sharp penknife to the executioner, who made two 
incisions across each other on the back oi \\i^ Tka^% 'T^\^ 

4 Twenty Year^ Recollections, 

was considered a formal compliance with the portion of 
the sentence which directed '* quartering." The body was 
then left to the care of the faithful friend, M*Kenna, who 
directed it to be placed in the hearse and conveyed to his 
house at Raheny. On the 26th, a funeral, very scantily 
attended, proceeded to Raheny churchyard. M*Kenna 
had the coffin lowered into a very deep grave, and the 
burial service was read by the parochial clergyman. Per- 
sons were engaged to watch for a few nights lest any 
attempt should be made to exhume the corpse for anato- 
mical purposes. In two days after the funeral my father 
received a note from M'Kenna, in consequence of which 
he immediately proceeded to Raheny. On his arrival he 
was pledged to secrecy and co-operation. He willingly 
assented, and having been conducted into a small apart- 
ment in the upper part of the house, he there beheld 
alive, although greatly debilitated, the man whom, at 
Baggot Street, he had cut down from the gallows. On 
the night of the 30th November, he brought Lonergan 
into Skinner Row. There he kept him concealed for up- 
wards of a week, and then succeeded in shipping him for 
Bristol. From thence he proceeded," unsuspected and 
uninterrupted, to America, where, under the name of 
James Fennel 1, he lived for a considerable time, and sup- 
ported himself by educational pursuits. His resuscitation 
was attributed to the rope having been unusually short, 
to his being .swung from the cart without receiving any 
perpendicular drop, and especially to the incisions in his 
neck, which produced a copious effusion of blood. Loner- 
gan stated that on being suspended, he immediately lost 
any sensation of a painful nature. His revival was 
attended with violent and distressing convulsions. 


Before I proceed to the details of some other narratives, 

I trust that my readers will not censure me for submitting 

to their perusal incidents connected with real or imputed 

crimes, and asking them to accompany me, even in imagi- 

Old Prisons, 5 

nation, to prison scenes. There is scarcely a novelist of 
celebrity that has not frequently introduced his readers to 
such places, and generally without exciting any repugnance 
to his description of them, or to the narratives which they 
supply or the subjects they suggest. Although the prison 
may disappear and be replaced by other structures, even of 
a different character, its ideal existence continues, and 
perhaps outlasts those that arose on its foundations or in 
its vicinity. In Paris, the Bastille is spoken of as if it 
still existed. The name is inscribed on omnibusses, and 
the cab -driver asks no further explanation when ordered to 
drive "a la Bastille." A house within a short distance (ff 
the place where it stood displays on a sign-board a view of 
the old fortress-prison : and few strangers pass it during 
the day without pausing to gaze on the picture of a build- 
ing to which history refers so many fearful incidents, 
exaggerated nevertheless most enormously by the unscru- 
pulous revolutionists who introduced a " reign of terror** 
of greater extent, and more sanguinary atrocity, than the 
records of all the state prisons of France could supply. 
The Chateau of Vincennes is an existing building ; visited 
more for the memories of the past than for the attractions 
of the present or the hopes of the future ; and few visitors 
leave it without gazing on the spot where, at midnight, the 
hapless Due D'Enghien received the fatal volley and filled 
an untimely grave. Many prisons in England are associated 
with local traditions or historical events highly interest- 
ing ; but the lapse of time and the habitudes of a people 
exceptionally romantic have deprived them of an extensive 
popular appreciation. The Tolbooth of Edinburgh and 
the building of the same designation in Glasgow have 
derived a lasting fame from the pen of Scott ; and ivhil^ 
the English language exists, the readers of the " Heart 
of Mid-Lothian" or '< Rob Roy" will have the Tolbooths 
vividly impressed on their imaginations. There are anec- 
dotes connected with the old prisons of Ireland, many* of 
which would afford most ample subjects for the writer of 
Romance, whilst even their simple details would fvill^ 
verify the adage that **Fact is strangex t\iaTvY\c.NAQr5\r X 

6 Twenty Years* Recollections. 

shall now proceed to a narrative which refers to a period 
more than a century past, but in which, as to names and 
dates, the crown-office records of the time fully agree with 
the statements which I have heard from the descendants 
of some of the most respectable characters connected, 
but in no discreditable manner, with the circumstances 

There may still be seen on the right hand side of the 
road leading from Dublin through Mount Brown to Inchi- 
core, a small portion of a granite wall which formerly was 
in front of ** Old Kilmainham," the common gaol of the 
County of Dublin. That building was considered one of 
the worst prisons of the kingdom, in consequence of its 
insuflScient size and lax discipline. Swift is said to have 
been, in his youthful days, a frequent, although not a 
criminal visitor at this old gaol ; and there, perhaps, in the 
conversation of its inmates, he acquired much of the 
coarseness and indelicacy which mar the wit and vigor of 
his productions. I shall, however, most willingly and 
scrupulously abstain from offering to my readers any 
specimens of the language of such a time and place, when 
the building echoed with drunken revelry, and the suffer- 
ings of a prisoner were aggravated by indecent buffoonery 
or ribald jests. To my narrative such expressions are 
neither necessary nor ornamental. 



On the 15tb of February, 1743, a gentleman named James 
Vesey, who held a commission in the army, was returning 
to Dublin from a southern county where he possessed a 
respectable landed property. The facilities which now 
exist for the safe and prompt remittance of money were 
then almost unknown, and he had with him upwards of 
eighteen hundred pounds in specie. He was so unfor- 
tiinate as to be stopped on the road at Oa^tleknock, atvd 

Vesey and KeogK 7 

robbed of the money, his watch, and its appendages. The 
highwayman who opened the door of the post-chaise had 
an associate who kept at the horses' heads, and coiil^ not 
be recognized. After the perpetration of the crime, the 
traveller proceeded on to Dublin and apprised the authori- 
ties of his loss. A vigilant search terminated, aftpr a few 
days, in the apprehension of two brother^ named Martin 
and Sylvester Keogh. They were men of a sinister repu- 
tation, who resided near Rathcoole, and spent more money 
than they could be supposed to have acquired honestly, 
being the occupiers of a thatched house of humble dimen- 
sions, and a neglected farm of six or seven acres. On 
being brought before a magistrate, Martin Keogh was 
fully identified by Mr. Vesey, as the man who, pistol in 
hand, opened the door of the chaise and despoiled him 
of his property. Against the other there was no crimina- 
ting evidence, and after a detention of some days, he was 
discharged. The closest search after the money termi- 
nated unsuccessfully, not a guinea could be found. Martin 
Keogh was committed for trial at the ensuing commission 
of OtfCr and Terminer for the county of Dublin, and was 
there convicted of the robbery, on the positive and un- 
doubtedly true testimony of Mr. Vesey, Sentence of 
death was passed, and the doomed felon became an occu- 
pant of the condemned cell at Old Kilmainham, from the 
dreary precincts of which he was to issue at the end of 
twenty-one days, to die upon the gallows. Mr. Vesey's 
leave of absence had been extended until the result of the 
trial left him free to proceed to England to join his regi- 
ment; and he departed from Dublin without any other 
satisfaction for his eighteen hundred pounds than what 
might be derived from the impending punishment of the 
delinquent. He had ample opportunities for seeing Martin 
Keogh during the preliminary proceedings and in the 
progress of the trial, and the figure and features of the 
highwayman remained indelibly impressed on his memory. 
Soon after Mr. Vesey 's anival in England, he proceeded 
to encounter the dangers and privalloivs o^ "^^^Vt^^Xfe^ 
. foreign service ; he attained the rauk o^ C^b^lsX^^ ;«A\v\a» 

8 Twenty Years* Jiecolleetions, 

regiment formed a portion of " the terrible English 
column" on the memorable field of Fontenoy, the 11th 
day of May, 1745. 

It is unnecessary to introduce here any lengthened or 
distinct description of the obstinate valor with which the 
English advanced, thinned, but undismayed, by the con- 
centrated fire of the French artillery, and unbroken by the 
repeated charges of veteran troops led by the most chival- 
rous of a gallant nobility. They were not broken until 
assailed by the Irish Brigade, who rushed upon them with 
irresistible fury. Then, penetrated and scattered, the 
column became completely disorganized, and subjected to 
fearful slaughter by the impetuous Irish and exulting 
French. Captain Vesey remained on the field of battle. 
He had been wounded, almost simultaneously, by two 
'balls, and also received a blow from the butt of a 
musket, which reduced him to a state of utter insensi- 

Louis XV. was present at Fontenoy, and in the hour of 
victory displayed the only virtues which, in his character, 
were associated with many great vices. He was generous 
and humane, and at once directed that the wounded 
English should receive the same care as was bestowed on 
his own soldiers. Considerable numbers were conveyed 
to Lille, where surgical skill and the soothing attentions 
.of religious communities and kind-hearted inhabitants 
effected numerous recoveries. Captain Vesey was soon 
convalescent. During his illness, several oflftcers of the 
Irish Brigade forgot he was an enemy, but recollected 
that he was their gallant and suffering countryman, and 
from them he experienced the courtesy of gentlemen and 
the sympathy of friends. Amongst them was the Count 
de St. Woostan, an officer in the regiment of 'Berwick, 
who was acting at Lille in a capacity similar to that of 
town-major in an English garrison. One evening, at the 
Count's quarters, the conversation turned on the various 
incidents of the battle in which they had been so recently 
engaged, and an oflSlcer remarked that Vesey owed his 
hfa. in hU prohahiVity, to a private in Berwick's regiment, 

Vesey and Keogh. 9 

who procured assistance to convey him from the field 
whilst in a state of insensibility, and manifested the ut- 
most anxiety for his preservation. This elicited a very 
natural remark from Vesey, that it was extraordinary the 
man had never since approached him, either to evince any 
satisfaction at his recovery, or to claim a recompense for 
his services. On further enquiry, he ascertained that the 
soldier's name was Manin Yaughan, and that he was in 
the garrison of Lille. On the following day he proceeded, 
accompanied by the Count, to seek out the man to whom 
his safety was ascribed, and found that he had been sent, 
on escort duty, a short distance from the town. The 
Count, thereupon, left directions for Martin Vaughan to 
present himself at his quarters on a certain evening. The 
soldier attended accordingly, and was ushered into the 
presence of the Count and Captain Vesey, the latter of 
whom felt inclined to distrust his own senses, when he 
beheld Martin Keogh, whom he believed to have been, for 
more than two years, mouldering in a felon's grave. 
Suddenly, however, the idea occurred that a recognition 
might be irreparably injurious to the man who had 
recently rendered him such material service. He felt at 
once that Keogh's escape from the ignominious fate to 
which he had been doomed was like an interposition of 
providence, highly beneficial to both of them. He ap- 
proached the man and briefly expressed his thanks for 
the care to which he ascribed his safety. He then ten- 
dered him twenty louut (Tor, but the gift was at once 
respectfully declined. The soldier appeared greatly agi- 
tated, and exclaimed — "No, Captain Vesey^ not a penny 
of your money will I ever touch again." 

The Count remarked the expression, and observed — 
<' Why, Vaughan, it would appear that you have met the 
captain before you took service with us.'' 

" We have met," said the soldier ; " he knows when 
and where ; he will tell you what he knows, but he does 
not know all. Ye are two gentlemen on whose honor I 
can rely, and I shall tell you on one condition." 

" Excuse me," said the Count, " my G\mo?i\\.^ S& n^x. ^^ 

10 Twenty Years' Recollections, 

intense as to make me desirous of a confidence disagree- 
able either to Captain Vesey or to you. You have been 
a good soldier, in every respect, since you entered th^ 
regiment. I have known you only in that capacity. I 
have no wish to be informed on any previous transaction." 

" And I pledge my hand and word," said Vesey, " that 
I shall never allude to you except as the man to whose 
humane exertions I am indebted for my life." 

He extended his hand to the soldier, who respectfully 
pressed it between his own, saying — " Let it be so, I am 
fully satisfied." He saluted the Count and departed. 

In about two months after an exchange of prisoners 
was effected. The Count and Vesey parted with mutual 
regret and assurances of lasting friendship. A few minutes 
before they parted, the Count mentioned that he had pro- 
cured for Vaughan the grade of sergeant. Vaughan asked 
and was granted an opportunity of bidding the Captain a 
respectful farewell. The military operations of the Eng- 
lish were for some time extensive and diversified ; and 
during eleven years Vesey did not revisit Ireland. He 
had been in India and in America ; and he again became 
a prisoner to the French in 1756, when the Due de Richlieu 
captured Minorca. There he again met with the Count de 
St. Woostan. Their friendship was renewed, and Vesey, 
who had attained to the rank of colonel, obtained permis- 
sion, upon parole, to visit Paris, whither the Count was 
pioceeding with despatches. He casually enquired for 
Vaughan, and was informed by the Count that soon after 
their parting at Lille, Vaughan's brother, Sylvester, had 
arrived from Ireland, and joined the regiment. He was 
killed at the battle of Raucoux, where Martin was severely 
wounded, and had consequently become an inmate of the 
Hotel des Invalides. There Colonel Vesey again saw the 
man, whose escape from an ignominious death had often 
occasioned perplexing conjectures to his prosecutor. The 
old sergeant evinced great pleasure at the Colonel's visit, 
attended him through the establishment, and having con- 
ducted him into one of the arbors, which the veterans of 
the Invalides have, fiom the very commeuceinftxvX. o^ VW 

Veaey and Keogh, 1 1 

institution, cultivated with peculiar care and taste, he 
offered the Colonel a seat under an agreeable shade, and 
requested him to listen to a narration of the escape which 
had been effected from Old Kilmainham. " I need not 
now, sir,*' he added, " ask any condition from you, for the 
man who arranged the affair is dead. No one can now 
be injured by the disclosure. I have bitterly mourned 
the disgraceful act that subjected me to capital punish- 
ment, which I only escaped by flying for ever from my 
native country, and which also led to the loss of my poor 
brother, whom I persuaded to join in it and some other 
similar deeds. God knows my heart. I would willingly 
make restitution of your property, but 1 shall never pos- 
sess the means. It was a great consolation that I was 
able to do you a little service after Fontenoy, and 1 felt a 
certain happiness in receiving your forgiveness when we 
parted at Lille." 

" My good friend," said the Colonel, ** as to the affair 
at Castleknock, I would wish you never to mention it 
again. I have, however, a great curiosity to know how 
you managed to avoid the fate which, to say the truth, I 
thought you had undergone." 

" We took the money, sir," said Martin, " and placed 
it in a strong canvas bag. We hid it in neither house, 
garden, nor field, but in a deep part of the river Liffey, 
below the Salmon Leap. There was a stout cord from 
the bag to a heavy weight, so that it might be easily 
caught by a drag. Well, I was convicted and sentenced, 
and there were four others condemned at the same Com- 
mission, and we were all to be executed on the same day. 
One was a forger, and three were housebreakers. We 
each occupied a separate cell in the condemned yard. It 
was a horrible place, for I well recollect that on each side 
of the yard a full length figure of Death was painted,* 
holding in his skeleton hands a scythe and hour-glass ; so 

* This gratuitous cruelty did not cease when Old Kilmainham 
' was taken down. Similar disgusting figures have been seen by 
me, on the door and walJs of the coudemwe^ '3ttiX^,va.>^^ -^x^^^vw* 
county gtiol. — F, T. P. 

•12 Tiventy Years* Recollections, 

.that wherever our eyes turned, we were reminded of our 
hapless condition and coming sufferings. The gaoler 
came in two or three times daily, whilst our cells were 
open, and I soon remarked that he took very little notice 
of the others, but spoke pretty often to me. On the fifth 
or sixth day after my sentence, I was in my cell, counting 
=my days, and trying to count my hours ; making pictures 
in my despairing mind of the cart and the crowd, and 
wringing as if I already felt the slippery noose of the soaped 
halter closing round the creeping flesh of my neck ; think- 
ing of the happy days of innocent childhood, and feeling 
€ome consolation in my misery that my brother had not 
been condemned ; that I left no wife or family, and that 
both my parents were dead, and spared the shame and 
sorrow of their son's public execution. This was the state 
of my mind when the gaoler entered the cell. He closed 
the door, and addressed some kind expressions to me, 
hoping that I was resigned to the great change that was 
impending, and enquiring if he could do anything for my 
comfort or consolation. In a stout but low tone 1 replied, 
that I would rather get rid of the business without being 
hanged at all. He closed the door, and sat down on the 
block-stool, and we remained silent for a few minutes ; 
but there were looks passing between us ; we were reading 
each other's hearts. At length he said — * Have you the 
money V 

" ' It is safe, every guinea of it,' I replied, * but useless 
to me and to every one else, if I am to stay here for the 
few remaining days of my life. Moreover, I could not 
give it all, for there would be very little use in going out 
of the prison if I had not the means of going far and going 
fast ; but I have fifteen hundred pounds for a friend, who 
would be a real friend.' 

" * Mr. Vesey is gone,' said the gaolor, ' we are perfectly 
secure from any observation or interference on his part ; I 
am running a great risk, but I shall try the chance. I 
am, I admit, in great want of money. Give me fifteen 
hundred pounds, and I will allow your brother to pass 
through my rooms to the top of the prison, and to bring a 

Vesey and Keogh, 13 

rope ladder with him. He can descend into the yard, and 
there he will find a key in the door of your cell ; this can 
be done at twelve to-morrow night ; and you may be far 
away before nine the following morning. Your brother 
will be here to see you by-and-by, you can arrange with 
him, but there is no time to be lost.' 

'* * My brother/ I replied, 'shall have nothing to do 
with the business, except to bring the money, I shall not 
cross the wall, I must go out by the door, I must be let 
out, or stay until I am disposed of along with the rest.' 
'* ' It is impossible,' said the gaoler. 
" * It is not impossible,' I replied, ' but very easy, if you 
can get a little assistance. I must be sick, very sick ; fever, 
gaol fever, is to be my complaint ; I must die, and be sent 
out in a coffin*' 

*' ' No,' said he, * there must be a real corpse. I think 
it can be managed, but I canntt have more than a thou- 
sand pounds for myself, the remainder of the money must 
be divided between two other persons, on whose co-opera- 
tion 1 feel certain that I can fully rely.' 

'* We agreed upon the plan, and for several days I was 
really sick, made so by artificial means — spirits, laudanum, 
tobacco, and other things were used in various ways. Half 
of the stipulated sum was brought by my brother, and paid 
to the gaoler in the condemned cell. The other men were 
removed to another part of the building. At length / 
died, you understand ; and on that night a corpse was 
introduced into my cell by the gaoler himself. It was of 
my size, and was procured from the neighbouring burial 
ground of the Hospital fields, vulgarly termed Bully^a 
Acre; but unlike the generality of such disinterments, it 
was to go back there again, and to be buried in my name. 
I was informed that there would be an inquest on me ; 
but as I had died of putrid, spotted fever of the most in- 
fectious description, it was not likely that the coroner or 
the jury would view my body, unless at the greatest pos- 
sible distance. I assisted the gaoler to arrange the sup- 
posed corpse of myself, placing the face to the wall^ and 
then I was quiatly Jet out upon t\\e \:v\^ xo'oA, ^l\«t 

14 Twenty Years Recollections. 

having paid the balance of the fifteen hundred pounds. 
My brother who had brought the money, was in waiting, 
but we soon separated. He thought it would prevent 
suspicion being raised if he attended the funeral of my 
substitute ; and I set out on foot, taking the road to 
Wicklow, and stopping in the morning to have a little 
rest and refreshment at Loughlinstown. About the time 
of my funeral, I was passing Coolagad, near Delgany, and 
was alarmed by a pack of hounds crossing the road close 
to where I was walking. There were some riders follow- 
ing them whom I knew, but they were too much engaged 
in the sport to think about, or even to look at me. I pro- 
ceeded by Wicklow and Arklow to Wexford, and there I 
got a passage to Jersey. From that island I was taken 
by a smuggler to St. Malo, on the supposition that I was 
extremely anxious to join the Irish Brigade. My life was 
now safe from the hangman, but I had much trouble and 
suflfering to encounter. I was suspected of being a spy, 
although I could not speak a word of French ; and the 
possession of some of your guineas was a great crime in 
the eyes of those who wished to get them for themselves. 
At Chartres I met a fellow-countryman, who was in Ber- 
wick's regiment, and at his instance I enlisted to get rid 
of the annoyance I was suffering, and to avoid the poverty 
which I saw approaching, and which was certain to over- 
take a stranger, whose only resource was military service. 
I took, on enlisting, the name of Vaughan, which was 
that of my mother's family. I have again to express my 
deep sorrow for the wrongful act I committed, and / hope 
you will never regret that I was not hangedJ^ 

Colonel Vesey parted with Martin Keogh, alias Vaughan, 
in the kindest manner, and was soon after enabled to pro- 
ceed to England. His military career was terminated by 
a wound at the capture of Quebec, in 1761, which incapa- 
citated him for further service: he died at Bath in 1776. 
The Count de St. Woostan accompanied the gallant but 
much calumniated Lally-Tollendahl to India. He pos- 
sessed his confidence, shared in his dangers and subse- 
guent persecutions, but eventually, freed from every im- 

Vesey and Keogh, 1 5 

putation, restored to the rank and emoluments of colonel, 
he died at Amboise, in 1782. His name was Alen, and 
he belonged to a family which, located at St. Woolstans, 
near Celbridge, in the county of Kildare, occupied high 
position in Ireland previous to the reign of Elizabeth, and 
fipm a collateral branch of which the ducal Howards of 
Norfolk derive the additional name of Fitzalen. 

Martin Vaughan married, in 1758, a blanchisseuse defin^ 
who had a comfortable dwelling and profitable business 
in the Rue de BeUechase, Paris. His name disappears 
from the register of the Invalides, in 1769. His escape 
from Old Kilmainham protracted his existence twenty-six 
years. It was effected by means which would not be 
practicable in any prison of thb British Empire at the 
present time. Officials have become more respectable, 
and their integrity is protected from temptation by the 
intervention of a vigilant superintending authority, un- 
known at the period to which the foregoing narrative 
refers. It will, in all probability, occur to the reader 
that the two persons whose co-operation the gaoler con- 
sidered as indispensable in effecting the escape of Martin 
Keogh, were the coroner of the county and the medical 
officer of the prison. Such a conclusion is almost inevi- 
table. Still, a similar project could not now be accom- 
plished by a similar combination. There have been, 
however, some inquests held in the same county (Dublin) 
which seriously compromised the coroner of the time and 
the medical man habitually employed by him, but none 
of them originated in a prison. It is right to state that 
they occurred anterior to the appointment of the present 
coroners and of their lespective immediate predecessors. 
I shall recur to them in a subsequent page or two, when 
I come to the narration of some extraordinary incidents 
entirely within my personal knowledge and recollection. 
As yet I have placed no female character prominently 
before my readers. I shall proceed to introduce one ; and 
however I may distrust my own powers of description, I 
feel that the mere facts which I shall detail will not prove 
uninteresting, especially as they refer to \i^i \^\iOxa. \ \s^vj 
term the heruinu of tlw stor}'. 

16 Twenty Yeavii Recollections, 



LoNGEViTT, although desired by almost all human beings, 
is a subject of contemplation to very few. We attach, in 
general, a greater interest to an aged tree or an antique 
building, than to a venerable individual whose life may 
connect with the present time the stirring period of the 
American war of Independence or the awful period of the 
French Revolution. It is, perhaps, better for ourselves 
that as we attain old age we should meet with respect and 
care, without being sought as close companions by our 
juniors : we thus become habituated to think more on 
those who have gone before us, and of our own approach 
to that solemn moment which is to quench the socket- 
glimmer of earthly existence. Nevertheless, we occasion- 
ally meet with some whose mental faculties have not 
yielded to the attacks of time, in proportion to the effects 
produced by his inexorable hand upon the corporeal frame, 
and whose society is sought by many who observe that 
they can, even in the years of senectude, revert to their 
early days, and seek to enjoy the pleasures of memory by 
detailing to others the scenes through which they have 
passed, and the points of character they have noted. Such 
a person I can truly designate my father to have been. 
His frame was robust, and his general health very good, 
even after he had attained to fourscore years. Accident 
had rendered him lame, but his mind and memory were 
strong, and his disposition affable. Whilst he perfectly 
recollected the past, he evinced a warm interest in the 
present ; and almost immediately after the opening of the 
Great Southern and Western Railway of Ireland, he sped 
from Dublin to Cork and back, merely to contrast the five 
hours' performance of the ** Iron Horse " with the four 
days' journey of his early years. It was a great gratifica- 
tion to him to take a slow drive through Dublin, and re- 
cpunt to his companions, of whom I was generally one, 

Mary Tudor. 17 

the former appearance of places, and the habits and pecu- 
liarities of their occupiers ; but no part of the city called 
forth his recollections more strongly than the locality of 
Christ Church Place. He never mentioned it by its pre- 
sent name ; with him it continued '^ Skinner Row ; " and 
it was no small pleasure to him to remark that the house 
in which he had lived and prospered at the beginning of 
the present century, was still remaining, whilst the entire 
of the opposite side of the '' Row '' had disappeared. He 
regretted the change even whilst he admitted the advan- 
tage of the alteration ; but he could not rt^rain from re- 
instating in his imagination, and describing, the narrow- 
fronted houses within eighteen feet of the opposite dwell- 
ings, rising to a height which effectually precluded even 
half-an-hour's sunshine from reaching the thoroughfare. 
His mind reverted to the former tenants, jewellers, silver- 
smiths, and booksellers, by which trades the *' How " had 
been monopolized ; and it was more agreeable to him to 
recollect Dick Tudor, Tom Delancy, Jemmy Wilson, and 
many others, cleaning their windows and sweeping their 
shops, than to remark that such avocations, in the present 
day, had ceased to be incumbent on even the junior ap- 
prentices, and had devolved upon menial servants. 

One evening he was enjoying the society of two or three 
convivial friends. He had taken a drive that day, accom- 
panied by me, and had halted so long in Christ Church 
Place, that the hackney carmen might almost have sus- 
pected that he meditated an invasion of their stand. He 
enjoyed his drive and his dinner, and having attained to 
his second glass of whiskey-punch, he commenced, at the 
instance of his companions, the narration of one of his 
" Skinner Row " reminiscences. 

Dick Tudor was a goldsmith and jeweller. He had the 
reputation of being the wealthiest man in the locality. 
He neither lent nor borrowed. His intercourse with his 
neighbours was very limited. He was a widower, and 
had an only child, of whom he was excessively fond. His 
tastes were in his business ; he had a love for his art, and 
would execute a beautiful design for a snxaAlii: q.^vwy^w^At 

18 Twmty Yeari Eecollecttons. 

tive profit than would satisfy him for second-hand plate 
or mere repairs ; but his affections excluded every other 
worldly object, and were concentrated in his daughter, 
Mary Tudor. 

She was about eighteen years of age at tVie time to 
which the commencement of the narrative refers, and 
although reared in a city, was as simple and unaffected in 
her manner as if her life had previously been passed on 
mountain heather or in mossy dell. She was a brunette of 
perfect features, and small but symmetrical figure. Her 
disposition appeared to be gay, and almost puerile, and 
none would suppose that in a trader's daughter, whose 
jocund smile and sparkling eyes seemed to seek and spread 
mirth around her, there was a latent intensity of feeling, 
aftd a determination of character, worthy of the noblest 
cause or of the highest lineage. 

Skinner Row had its attachments, jealousies, and little 
diplomacies as fully as ever they existed even in more im- 
portant localities. In one respect, it possessed a material 
for civic intrigue greater than could be found in any 
other part of Dublin in the last century. The Row com- 
manded, in the Common Council, one seat for the Sta- 
tioners' Guild, and two for the Goldsmiths. As to those 
objects of ambition, there was a certain fixed understand- 
ing — there should be no division outside their own pre- 
cincts, and the members chosen shoulcf be men of the 
Row. Amongst themselves, intrigues, insinuations, or open 
opposition might be freely practised ; but once they had 
determined on the man to be supported, every vote should 
go to him. Dick Tudor and James Wilson were the gold- 
smiths chosen for the Common Council, and the distinc- 
tion thus conferred excited great envy in the mind of 
Tom Delancy, whose discontent was kept fully alive by 
his son, not on account of civic honours, but because 
young Christian Wilson had contrived to stand between 
him and the sun in the rays of which he wished to bask, 
namely, the eyes of pretty Mary Tudor. 

Old Tudor and James Wilson were friends, not very in- 
timate, but perhaps liking and respecting each other more 

Mary Tudor, 19 

on that account. Tudor's daughter and Christian Wilson 
were lovers, and the infrequency of their meetings only 
rendered their occasional interviews more delectable. The 
neighbours observed the attachment of the young people 
before their parents suspected its existence ; but the 
moment Tudor perceived a preference evinced by his 
daughter for young Wilson, he sedulously endeavoured 
to prevent all future communications between them. He 
became suddenly anxious that Mary should visit some 
relatives in the County of Wexford, about whom he had 
for years expressed no interest. He thought change of 
air would materially serve her health, although no other 
eye could notice the slightest indication of illness, or even 
delicacy of constitution. Accompanied by an elderly 
female attendant, she left Dublin by a conveyance termed 
Good's Long Coach, which the proprietor, William Good, 
advertised as the perfection of cheap and expeditious tra- 
velling. It left the Ram Inn, Aungier Street, Dublin, on 
each Monday morning, at an early hour, so as to ensure 
reaching Wicklow town on the succeeding night. Tuesday 
saw the vehicle achieve a further progress to Gorey, and 
on Wednesday evening it reached Wexford. It returned 
to Dublin in the three succeeding days, and thus enabled 
the public to have a cheap, safe, and comfortable com- 
munication, to and fro, between two places about ninety 
English miles asunder, within the short space of six days. 
Three or four weeks elapsed, and Tudor mentioned, in 
answer to some kind enquiries, that Mary was enjoying 
herself wonderfully at Kilmore, in the County of Wexford, 
and that she had written him a very interesting descrip- 
tion of the Sal tee Islands, St. Patrick's Bridge, and the 
Lady's Island. She was very comfortable with a worthy 
cousin and his wife, both arrived at an age which made 
them appreciate a life of quietude. They were very kind 
to her, and they had no family or nearer relations than 
himself and Mary. Her visit was likely to lead to con- 
siderable advantages. He would never have disclosed his 
daughter's temporary residence if he \\«td xvviX. Vv'eXv^-^'^^ 
Kilmore to be as difficult of access to OXm^Usva.'^'^^^^^^ 

20 Twenty Year6* Recollections. 

Madeira or Malta would be to a gallant of the present 
time. The lover was a youth of very peculiar character — 
clever and active, but rash and inconsiderate. Having 
ascertained that the smacks which traded between Wex- 
ford and Dublin, if favoured by a fair wind, could make 
the run in a few hours, he determined on seeing Mary- 
Tudor. His father had allowed him as a perquisite the 
profits arising from making "balloon guineas '* into rings, 
and he had thereby acquired a few pounds, as it was a 
very prevalent custom for females of the humbler classes 
to invf^st a guinea in a ring, and carry their money on 
their fingers. Savings-banks were then unknown. 

Christian informed his father that he wished to go, for 
a few days, to a friend in Drogheda, and obtained his con- 
sent. He left home in the evening, ostensibly to go by 
the mail, but he sojourned to Hoey*s Court, and was seen 
there in company with some young men whose characters 
were unknown, or worse. They left Uoey's Court about 
ten o'clock, and Wilson betook himself to Sir John's 
Quay, and went out of the river in the smack " Selskar," 
of V\ exford, on the night-tide. After midnight Dick 
Tudor's workshop was robbed ; but the guilty parties did 
not all escape. Two were apprehended leaving the pre- 
mises, and were recognised as having been seen in Chris- 
tian Wilson's company in Hoey's Court for some time 
after his own father supposed him to have left Dublin for 
•Drogheda. A letter was posted to the latter place, and, 
to old Wilson's astonishment, he received a reply that his 
son had not gone there. Where was he ? 

Whispered malice is most intense. Delancy and his 
son added assertion to suspicion, and revelled in the idea 
of a broken-hearted father, and a disgraced, degraded son, 
being forced by the awkward circumstances, magnified 
and industriously disseminated, to abandon, one, the co- 
veted representation of the Goldsmiths' Guild, and the 
other, the pursuit in which all the affections of his heart 
and the energies of his mind were concentrated— the love 
of Mary l\idor. 

In a few days Christian Wilson returned to Dublin. 

Mayy Tudor, 21 

Ilis father's reproached were fierce and unmeasured, and 
hecame a perfect storm of rage when the young man re- 
fused to state where he had been, or for what purpose he 
had left home. Old Tudor aggravated the quarrel be- 
tween the father and son, by accusing them of a design 
to entrap his daughter into a clandestine union, to which 
James Wilson replied that he would sooner transport his 
son than consent to his marriage with Tudor's daughter. 
The circumstances of the robbery were fully investigated. 
They did not directly inculpate Christian ; but enough 
appeared to sully his reputation, and to prove that he 
was not sufficiently guarded in his associations. Old 
Delancy expressed his good-natured regret that the son of 
one " Wainscot man"* should be stronprly suspected of rob- 
bing another. Young Delancy, with affected benevolence, 
expressed his sincere gratification that Christian had not 
been caught ; and there were not wanting some kind- 
hearted individuals to convey his observations to the un- 
happy subject of them. The young men casually met 
in Christ Church yard ; an explanation was demanded ; 
and the demand was answered by the sneering remark, 
that the affair explained itself. Christian was maddened 
by his rival's taunts, and gave Delancy a fearful beating. 
A blow or fall produced concussion of the brain. The 
assailant had to fly ; and his father determined to send 
him, banished and unforgiven, to the West Indies, con- 
signing him to the care of a relative who had been for 
several years in l^arbadoes. 

Mary Tudor received a letter written at Liverpool, and 
announcing the immediate departure of Christian Wilson 
for his tropical destination. In it he simply stated the 
circumstances which led to his expatriation, and renewed 
his vows to her of deep affection and fidelity. The young 

• In the old " Tholsel " or Guildhall of Dublin, members who 
had served the office of Sheriff, or who represented the Guild of 
Merchants, occupied the centre of the Council chamber. The 
members representinoj incorporated trades sat next the wainscot. 
They had the reputation of being the most iudeyendeut raeuilMita 
of the Corporation. 

22 Twenty Years' Recollections, 

woman at once determined on departing from Kilmore ; 
and on her arrival in Dublin placed Christian's letter in 
her father's hands. She insisted on the examination of 
the master and crew of the Selskar ; and they proved that 
they dropped down the river with Christian on board, 
two hours before the time of the robbery. But this was 
not «11. The guilty parties confessed that the young man 
was not with them, and accounted for having sought his 
society in Hoey*s Court, for the pui-pose of eliciting some 
information as to Tudor*s premises into which they were 
desirous of effecting an entrance. Young Delancy had 
recovered. Tudor and James Wilson had been reconciled ; 
but Christian had sailed in the ship " Hyacinth," of Liver- 
pool, and he must see Barbadoes before he can become 
aware of Mary's truth and her determined exertions to 
remove all aspersions from her lover's character. 

The " Hyacinth " never reached her destined port. Her 
fate was conjectured, but was not ascertained, as it would 
be in the present time of superior arrangements in agency 
and communication. Her owners received their insurance 
as for a total loss, and James Wilson believed that his 
hapless son had been entombed in the ocean. 

At the commencement of the war between England and 
her revolted colonies of North America, two commis- 
sioners were sent out, in the hope that differences might 
be reconciled and peace restored. The Earl of Carlisle 
and Mr. Eden (afterwards Lord Auckland) were pro- 
ceeding on this mission in a frigate, and after having 
encountered very stormy weather, they fell in with a boat 
in which were several persons, reduced to the utmost 
extremity by hunger and fatigue. They were rescued, 
and recovered their i?trength by rest and nutrition. All, 
except one, were sailors, and they were, perhaps very sum- 
marily, added to the frigate's crew. The landsman was 
of a melancholy temperament, although young and na- 
turally strong. He was, however, of an humble and un- 
presuming manner, which did not indicate vulgarity or 
ignorance. He expressed a desire to make himself useful, 
cleaned some watches for the officers, and kept the plate 
of their mess in proper order. Curiosity \rvduc^d Lotd 

Mary Tudor, 23 

Carlisle to accost him, and the communication resulted 
in several acts of kindness on the part of the nobleman, 
which were respectfully and gratefully, and perhaps it 
may be said, gracefully, received. His Lordship's interest 
in the poor shipwrecked fellow increased ; and on their 
arrival in America, he obtained for his protege, from Sir 
Henry Clinton, an e»signcy in the army. 

Meanwhile Christian Wilson was forgotten in Skinner 
Row by all except one. They had " mourned him dead 
in his father's house J^ His family never adverted to his 
fate, for the subject was of painful recollection in more 
senses than one. But Mary Tudor, although she seldom 
spoke of Christian, would not admit that he was dead. 
Suitors for her hand were numerous, but to none would 
she give the slightest encouragement, and Delancy soon 
discovered that indifference was too mild a term to describe 
her feeling towards him. Some years had passed. Her 
father had attained complete senectude, but was still 
sound in mind and hale in body. He lived happily with 
his daughter, who consulted his wishes on every subject, 
except his anxiety to see her married in comfort and 
respectability before he died. She had attained to her 
twenty-fifth or twenty-sixth year, and she was particularly 
intimate with the family of the person from whom this 
narrative is derived. In fact, it was her only intimacy, 
and in her intercourse with them she frequently avowed 
her conviction that the ''lost one'* would return. 

One morning a note was received by my father, request- 
ing him to call, as soon as possible, on the writer, at the 
Queen's Head Hotel in Bride Street. He repaired to the 
place appointed ; and in consequence of what there oc- 
curred, he had interviews next morning with Richard 
Tudor and James Wilson, and prevailed on them to ac- 
company him to Cork Hill, about 11.30 a.m., and there 
he pointed out to the astonishtd and delighted old men 
Captain Christian Wilson, of the GOth Regiment, march- 
ing his company to relieve the guard at Dublin Castle. 

The tale concludes. The lovers met and were united. 
Old Tudor was rich ; his closing years werelAa\\\\Y» \VvUq\x. 
retired from the army after lie \\ivd v\Uvx\u.^'\ xXi^ \^\^ ^S. 

24 Twenty Years' Recollections, 

Major, and settled on a property in a southern county, 
where the descendaitts of him and Mary Tudor are living 
in independence and respectability. 

This narrative has been closely criticised. It has been 
asked, Did the hero of ihe tale keep his very existence 
concealed so long, and why? Suspicions have been ex- 
pressed that the lovers had some communication or corres- 
pondence. Whatever conjectures may be entertained, they 
need not be canvassed here. The reader may form his 
own opinion. Much was said on the subject, and some- 
thing was even sung. The following verses are a portion 
of a lyric attributed to a Mr. Rooney, a basket-maker in 
Fishamble Street. The Tholsel guard, to the somnolent 
tendencies of which an allusion is made, were in number 
about a dozen. They were dressed in blue with orange 
facings, and armed with pole-axes. An alderman of the 
time sarcastically described them as "selected for their 
age and infirmities, and not required to be awake unless 
at their meals." 

'* Some folk averr'd a bird was heard 
To Mary's casement nigh ; 
And from its throat there tbrill'd the note, 
He's coming by-and-by. 

"Some said there came, with war-worn frame, . 
A vet' ran grenadier, 
Who spoke of one that led him on 
Through battle's fierce career. 

'* Some said between them both had been 
Of love notes not a few, 
But this was clear, he did appear, 
And wed his maiden true. 

" Through Skinner Row the toast must ^o. 
And our cheers reach Christ Church Yard, 
Till its vaults profound send back the sound, 
To waken the Tholsel guard. 

" Here's to their health in peace and wealth ; 
May Death, that bold intruder, 
A long while pause ere he lays bis claws 
On such as Mabt Tudor. ' 

The Birth of a Word. 25 




T HAVE mentioned in the narrative respecting Lonergan, 
that my father was a member of the corps of Dublin 
Volunteers, and that he was Serjeant of the grenadier 
company. Many of his comrades were living within my 
memory, and I could name five or six who derived great 
gratification from reverting to the period when the citizen 
soldiers of Ireland were enrolled in thousands for the 
purpose of resisting an invasion which was threatened by 
the French. The reviews, parades, and convivial associa- 
tions of the Volunteers afforded many agreeable recollec- 
tions ; and I have heard from different narrators the same 
account of what may be termed the birth of a word which 
originated in Eustace Street, Dublin, upon the same day 
that ushered into this breathing world the oldest and 
highest of rank amongst the Irish nobility.* I indulge in 
a hope that my readers may consider the circumstances 
under which a word was added to our language as curious 
or interesting, especially when they are apprised that it 
was not taken from any other language, ancient or modem, 
and yet it has become ubiquitous. 

On the 2l8t of August, 1791, news had arrived in 
Dublin that Her Grace the Duchess of Leinster had given 
birth to a young Marquis of Kildare. To all ranks of 
society the intelligence was welcome, but especially to the 
Volunteers. The Duke was the general of that force in 
his province, but his own corps, of which he was colonel, 
was the Dublin one. Along with the announcement of 
the accouchement of the Duchess, came an intimatiop, 
that the corps would be expected at Carton on the happy 
occasion of the christening. The opportunity for paying 

♦ These expressions refer to the late Duke o\lA\x\%\«t,'^\i^\i».% 
died since I wrote them, — F. T. V, 

26 Twenty Yeari Recollections, 

a compliment to their commander was hailed by the 
citizen-soldiers with the utmost enthusiasm, and there 
"was a numerous gathering of them, to learn the particu- 
lars and to consider their arrrangements, at a tavern in 
Eustace Street, Dublin, kept by a person named Bennett, 
and known as " The Eagle." The evening had, as might 
be expected, a convivial termination. Several who had 
attained to high civic dignities were amongst those as- 
sembled ; and there was also present Richard Daly, the 
proprietor and manager of the Smock Alley theatre, who 
had an extraordinary propensity for making wagers in 
reference to incidental matters, however unimportant. In 
the course of the evening some casual opinions were ex- 
pressed on the histrionic powers of an actor named Sparkes, 
who was then drawing immense houses in Daly's theatre. 
One of the Volunteers, named Delahoyde, expressed his 
surprise that such crowds should run after Sparkes, and 
remarked that his popularity was more the result of 
fashionable caprice than of histrionic merits. ** He is, in 
my opinion," added the speaker, "just what the French 
would term un fagotin" " And what is the exact meaning 
of that word?" asked Alderman Moncrieffe, "There is, 
perhaps, no one word in the English Language which con- 
veys its meaning exactly," said the interrogated party. 
" If I could give an English word to signify a low, vulgar 
mountebank, I should not have employed the French 
terra." " Then," observed Daly, " why do you not make 
a word and send it into circulation ? You should not feel 
aware that our language was deficient in expression with- 
out being charitable enough to supply its want, especially 
as it costs nothing to make a word." " But," rejoined 
the other, " how could I ensure the reception of a word 
into general use ? It might be characterized as slang, or 
remain unnoticed and unadopted ; it might be as difficult 
to obtain currency for a word, or more so, than it was to 
pass Wood's halfpence." 

"Dick," said Alderman Moncrieffe, "suppose you try 

^our own hand, as you think the matter so easy. I would 

Jeave it to your own ingenuity, but I fear you will find it 

The Birth of a Word, 27 

very difficult to induce the public to take your word. If 
they took some of your assurance it might be an advan- 
tage ; you have plenty to spare." 

" I thank you, Alderman," replied Daly. " I did not 
suppose that so much wit could come from the neighbour- 
hood of the Tholsel." 

"Oh !" said Moncrieffe, "it has strayed up to us from 
the theatre, where it has lately become scarce. But, Dick, 
why have you chatted so long on this and other subjects 
this evening without offering a single wager ? Come now, 
start a bet." 

" I shall not use a phrase or make a word," said Daly, 
" in disparagement of Sparkes, from whom I have derived 
much pleasure and profit ; but I shall bet you twenty 
guineas, and I propose our friend and captain, who is also 
your brother alderman, I propose John Carleton as the 
judge or arbitrator between us, that within forty-eight 
hours there shall be a word in the mouths of the Dublin 
public, of all classes and sexes, young and old ; and also 
that within a week, the same public shall attach a definite 
and generally adopted meaning to that word, without any 
suggestion or explanation from me. I also undertake, as 
essential to the wager, that my word shall be altogether 
new and unconnected with any derivation from another 
language, ancient or modem. Now, Alderman, what say 
you to taking my word or winning my money ?" 

" I shall not take your word, Dick, but 1 propose win- 
ning some of your money. I shall put five guineas in the 
wager, provided the present company take up the balance, 
and let the winnings be spent on the evening of the first 
parade day after our return from the christening of the 
young Marquis of Kildare." 

The company were joyous, and the proposal of the 
appropriation of the proceeds to festivity induced a speedy 
acceptance of the remaining liability. The terms were re- 
duced to writing, and deposited with Carleton. Daly 
looked at his watch and took his departure. It happened 
,to be a Saturday evening, and he reached the theatre a 
short time before the termination of live "!^^T^viYT£, '^\^i 

28 Twenty Years^ Recollections, 

imnnediately procured some lumps of chalk, and a dozen 
or two of cards. Upon each of the cards he wrote a word. 
It was short and distinct, and at the fall of the curtain he 
required the attendance of the call-boys, scene- shifters, 
and other inferior employes of the concern. To each of 
them he gave a card and a piece of chalk, and directed 
them to perambulate the city until daybreak, chalking the 
word upon the doors and shutters of the houses. His 
directions were diligently obeyed, and on the Sunday 
morning the doors of shops, warehouses, and even private 
dwellings appeared to have one word conspicuously 
chalked on them. The timid were alarmed, lest it indi- 
cated some unlawful or hostile intention, but these appre- 
hensions were dissipated by the fact of its universal 
appearance. One, as he issued from his dwelling, con- 
ceived that it was meant for a nick-name for him ; but he 
immediately changed his opinion on seeing it on his 
neighbour's premises also. It could not be political, for 
all parties were treated the same way. It was manifestly 
not a mark on any religious persuasion, for all denomina- 
tions were chalked alike. It was not belonging to any 
known language, nor could a word of any meaning be 
formed by the transposition of its letters. Still the univer- 
sality of its appearance excited the curiosity of all, and 
formed a subject for public conjecture and general conver- 
sation. After a few days the general conclusion was, that 
the word was a hoax, a trick, a humbug, a joke. However, 
it was not forgotten. The parties to the wager, which 
Dick Daly was adjudged to have won, have all disap- 
peared, but I have heard several of them narrate the par- 
ticulars as I have stated them. Tne hands by which 
the word was chalked have all mouldered into clay, but 
the term that owed its birth to the Eustace Street wager 
has become almost ubiquitous. It is heard in India, 
Australia, the United States, Canada, or the Cape ; in 
fact, wherever the English language is spoken. The word 
is Qriz. 

It may not be inopportune to mention here that I re- 
Jated the foregoing account of the oii^m of xkss, word 

The Birth of a Word. 29 

" quiz " one day in, I think, the year 1832, at the table of 
Cornelius Lvne, the facetious and convivial banister of 
the Munster Circuit, where he was de'signated, in contra- 
distinction to the old Irish chieftain, " Con of the hundred 
battles,^* ** Con of the hundred bottles*^ Amongst the 
guests was a gentleman named Montgomery, who resided 
in Belfast. On hearing my story, he remarked that a 
quiz has occasionally produced a reality. He proceeded 
to tell us that when James Madison was President of the 
United States, a young man connected with one of the 
most eminent houses in Belfast, thought fit to make an 
American tour. Having crossed the Atlantic, he passed 
upwards of eighteen months to his perfect satisfaction. 
On his. return he was greatly pestered by one of his 
fellow-townsmen, a pushing, plausible, self-sufficient kind 
of fellow, for letters of introduction to some American 
friends, the applicant declaring his intention of visiting all 
the principal cities of the Union. At length the solicited 
party replied to an urgent entreaty, by declaring that 
there was no one with whom he felt himself warranted to 
take such a liberty except his friend Madison. *' The Pre- 
sident ! *' exclaimed the importunate teaser ; '* why it 
would be invaluable." Acceding to his request, a letter 
was written commencing with " My dear Mr. Madi<on," 
and conveying the assurance, that the attentions which the 
writer had received would never be forgotten, and that 
the recollection of such kindness emboldened him to in- 
troduce a friend, in the hope that he would be received 
with even a portiou of that urbanity which had betn ex- 
perienced so agreeably, and remembered so gratefully, by 
his ever faithful and obliged, &c., &c. The traveller 
departed, and a considerable time elapsed before he re- 
appeared in Belfast. When he returned, his first visit 
was to the author of the valuable introduction, '* My 
dear friend," said he, " I presented your letter at a public 
reception. The President was more than polite, he was 
extremely cordial. I was invited to several delightful 
parties, and received the utmost attervliot^. 1\. ^n^'&^V^^* 
ever, very extraordinary, that N\\i^iu 1 csW^^i \.o ^^"^ \soj 

30 Twenty Yeari EecoUections. 

farewell visit, he asked me several questions in reference 
to your personal appearance^ remarking that you had 
lapsed from his recollection." This was not so very sur- 
prising, for the President had never seen the man whose 
letter of introduction for the other had been a thorough 
quiz. At the conclusion of the anecdote which my nar- 
rative had elicited from Mr. Montgomery, Tom Moylan, 
Mr. Lyne's nephew, contributed another. He remarked 
that the Belfast man had only quizzed a President, but 
a Dublin man had completely humbugged a king. *When 
George the Fourth was reigning, a Dublin medical doctor 
wrote a book. He had a copy splendidly bound for pre- 
sentation, and then went to London, to the royal levee, 
where he handed a card to the lord-in-waiting, on which 
his name appeared as attending to present his work on a 
certain professional subject, and to receive the honor of 
knighthood. The lord-in-waiting thought that all was 
right; the king thought so, too. The Dublin doctor 
knelt down, the king took a sword gave him the slap of 
dignity, and bade him arise Sir Thomas — — , After 
the levee, and when the newspapers had published the 
knighthood as one of the incidents of the day, there were 
some enquiries about the recipient of the distinction. 
Who had recommended him ? Of what minister was he 
the protege ? But they were all too late, the knighthood 
had been conferred. People could only laugh. Canning 
was reported to have said, that he supposed the doctor 
claimed the honor by prescription. Although I was not 
personally acquainted with the medical knight who was 
the subject of Tom Moylan's anecdote, I have a perfect 
recollection of him for several years before he was dubbed 
a " Sir." He resided in St. Peter's parish, Dublin, and 
was very prominent in the old agitation times antecedent 
to Catholic Emancipation. At the vestries there could 
not be a rate or cess proposed to which he had not an 
amendment or direct negative to oiFer. On one occasion, 
at a very crowded parochial meeting, he complained to 
Archdeacon Torrens, who was presiding, that the vestry- 
room was tco llnjitcd a place for such an imi^oitaxvX. ^v'g»c\iv 

A Millionaire, 31 

sion as that in which they were engaged. " I move, 
reverend sir," said he, " that we adjourn to the Church- 
yard." " My dear doctor," replied the archdeacon, very 
quaintly, " you will have us there time enough." 



I SHALL revert to old Skinner Row in reference to the 
career of an individual which may be said to have com- 
menced there about the year 1782. The incidents which 
I shall detail are nob of an amator}' or very sentimental 
nature, but nevertheless, truly extraordinary. To a Dublin, 
or even an Irish reader, it is unnecessary to offer an assu- 
rance of their truth, or to mention the individual's name. 
Only one error in reference to him has had currency, and 
that to a very limited extent. It arose, in all probability, 
from envy or malice, and consisted in describing him as a 
person of very imperfect education, of plebeian manners 
and disposition, and of almost menial avocations. He 
might have been truly described as well-informed, unaf- 
fectedly courteous, unobtrusive of his own opinions, and 
tolerant of the opinions of others, whilst his business 
transactions were marked by diligence, integrity, and in- 
telligence. The proprietor of a very extensive establish- 
ment in a central situation in Dublin, where bookselling 
and auctions of libraries were carried on, had advertised 
for an assistant ; and the situation attracted the attention 
of many competitors, of whom the individual alluded to 
was one. He was young and active, and sought a per- 
sonal interview with Mr. V. the advertiser. He was 
informed that the latter had gone up to Skinner Row, to 
my father s house, where he would be engaged lor upwards 
of an hour. The applicant hurried off to the narrow^ 
crowded, and inconvenient locality. T\\e {ooUxa^ \^'e»A ^V4- 
proportioDally raised above the carriag^e roaOi, axA 'oX \)dl^ 

32 Twenty Ymri Recollections. 

very door of the house to which he was going, he acciden- 
tally slipped and fell. In a disabled condition, he was 
raised and carried in, and it was ascertained that his ankle 
was dislocated. His sufferings excited great sympathy. 
He was conveyed to a bedroom, and surgical aid was pro- 
cured. Mr. V. manifested great interest in the young 
man, and came frequently to see him. After several 
weeks elapsed his cure was effected, and the situation 
which he sought was given to him. He expressed the 
deepest gratitude to my father for the kindness he had 
experienced, and the acquaintaince which commenced in 
the painful accident referred to, ripened ultimately into a 
very close intimacy. He gained the confidence of Mr. V., 
who conferred many marks of his esteem, and on the re- 
tirement of that gentleman from business, he became, to a 
great extent, his successor. All his undertakings pros- 
pered, and he acquired the reputation of being extremely 
wealthy. A rumour was circulated that, between the 
leaves of some books which he had purchased, he had 
found several bank notes or considerable value, but that 
report was groundless. In addition to extensive book- 
selling, he had formed a connection with the house of 
Bish and Co., of Cornhill, by which he was enabled to do 
a profitable business in bills on London amongst the Dublin 
traders, for at that time the facilities of letters of credit 
were very little known. He also dealt largely in the 
tickets and shares of the State Lotteries which, three or 
four times in the year, stimulated the community into 
legalized gambling. One evening in the year 1794, my 
father had occasion to call upon him, and found him un- 
usually dissatisfied. He said that Bish's people had made 
a great mistake in sending him several whole tickets in- 
stead of quarters, eighths, or sixteenths, and that three 
tickets had been left on his hands, involving a loss of 
sixty pounds. There was not sufficient time to communi- 
cate with London before the drawing day, and he could 
only warn them against committing a similar error on the 
next occasion. However, in about a week after, my 
futhcr ascertained that the mistake had eventuated in one 

The Ship Street Diamond, 33 

of the tickets turning out a prize for twenty thousand 
pounds. Bish was no longer censured by the man whose 
wealth, previously considerable, had received a great and 
unexpected augmentation. The writer of fiction would 
hesitate before he would adopt a young man lying on the 
flagway of a city in which he was a complete stranger, 
with a dislocated ankle, as the material for a future 
millionaire. The person to whom this narrative refers was 
not English, Irish, or Scotch. He was a Manxman, who 
left his native island to seek in Dublin, what he most com- 
pletely found, a fortune. He died a member of Parliament 
for an Irish county. Three of his sons attained to similar 
positions, and one of them was elevated to the House of 
Peers. Their positions were honourably and worthily 


SLAB law's window — OLD NEWGATE. 

I HAVE already mentioned that old Skinner Row contained 
a considerable number of establishments belonging to gold- 
smiths and jewellers. Pre-eminent amongst them was 
one kept, in the early part of the present century, by 
Matthew West, who realised an ample fortune there, and 
attained to high civic distinctions in Dublin. His concern 
w^s celebrated for an extensive assortment of jewelry, and 
for the tasteful and correct execution of orders specially 
relative to the setting of precious stones. When such 
were brought to be cleaned, arranged, or set, the owner 
was required to state the value which he attached to the 
property, and to sign such statement on the back of the 
receipt given for the articles. Mr. West gave considerable 
employment, especially in gem-setting, to a man named 
Delandre, who occupied the upper part of a house in 
Great' Ship' Street, in front of the gTOund on VtC\Oji \iaj^ 

34 Twenty Tears' Recollections, 

church of St. Michael le Pole formerly stood, and over 
the yard of which the windows of his working-room 
opened. A narrow passage led from the street under the 
house to a building in the rere, and a high wall separated 
this passage from the old cemetery. The top of the wall 
■was thickly studded with broken glass, to prevent tres- 
passes. In the year 1811, a gentleman called on Mr. 
West, and produced a diamond to which he attached con* 
siderable value, and which he wished to have set in a 
peculiar style. His order was taken, and a receipt was 
given for the stone, with an endorsement of its value at 
£950. Delandre was sent for, and received the diamond, 
with directions for the setting, and with an injunction to 
be expeditious. He took it to his work-room, and, the 
weather being very warm, the window close to his bench 
had been opened. He was using heavy pressure of the 
diamond against the material in which it was to be set, 
when either the tool or the gem slipped, and the latter 
flew out of the opened window. Instantly alarming his 
family, he watched the passage and the yard until means 
were adopted to prevent the entrance of any strangers. 
Then the passage was swept, and the sweepings were 
sifted. The surface of the old cemetery, for a considerable 
space, was similarly treated, the top of the wall was 
brushed carefully, and a tombstone in which a fissure was 
observed was raised and examined ; but all the searching 
was fruitless. Finally, Delandre had to betake himself to 
Mr. West, and communicate the disastrous loss of the 
valuable jewel. Extraordinary as was the statement, Mr. 
West did not discredit the workman, in whose probity he 
placed great confidence. He undertook to afford constant 
employment to Delandre and to his son, but stipulated that 
an insurance should be effected on the life of the former, 
and that weekly deductions should be made from their 
earnings, so as to provide for the premium on the insu- 
rance policy, and form a reserve for the value of the 
diamond. Delandre scrupulously observed his engage- 
ments. He had full employment from West, and although 
he was working, as he termed it, << for a dead horse/' he 

The Ship Street Diamond. 35 

kept his hands busy and his heart light. Each year les- 
sened his liabilities, and at length, having paid for the 
diamond, he received an assignment of the policy of insu- 
rance, for the ultimate benefit of his family. He had 
grown old and rather feeble, but still, in conjunction with 
his son, attended industriously to his trade. Mr. West 
had died, and I, who had been a schoolboy when the 
diamond was lost, had become a magistrate of the Head 
Police Court of Dublin. In my younger days I had 
often heard of the Ship Street diamond, and the various 
accounts of its loss were occasionally exaggerated im- 
mensely in reference to its size and value. In 1842 
some much-needed repairs were in progress at the rere of 
Delandre's dwelling. Whitewashing and plastering were 
intended, and the top of the wall between the yard and 
passage was to be re-glassed. Old Delandre had gone 
out to buy some provisions, and on his return he was 
accosted by one of the workmen who had been removing 
the glass from the wall, and who showfed him a curiosity 
which he had found. Delandre did not require a second 
look to satisfy himself that it was the long-lost gem. 
Amongst the glass which had been on the wall there was 
the neck of a pint bottle, which had been placed in the 
plaster with the mouth downwards, and it had formed the 
trap in which the diamond had been caught on falling 
from the window. Delandre gave the finder a liberal 
reward ; but with a laudable anxiety to remove all suspi- 
cion of a sinister nature from himself, he had the dis- 
covery of the diamond made the subject of a solemn 
declaration, which the finder subscribed before me in the 
Head Police Court. The loss of the gem had been even- 
tually highly advantageous to the man, by whom it was 
at first very naturally considered a great calamity. It had 
induced him to adopt a life of strict economy and industry, 
which easier circumstances would not have suggested or 

Z^f Twenty Tear/ Recoiieethw, 


Th<; nAum Mr. West to whom the Jast incident referred 
harl ft UnudHf}tn*t privsLU: residence in Harcourt Street, and 
h*: wan known habitually to place an unlimited confidence 
ti th'?Ciir<; and dijjcretion of his wife, to leave large sums 
iri licr c»iHtody, and to approve of or acf|uiesce in the in- 
vestments Uf which she might apply such moneys. Her 
tnunagerri<;nt fully justified his confidence, and he made 
no secret <ff the course he had adopted or of the satisfac- 
t^>ry results it produc€;d. In 1817 he had arrived one 
morning in Skinner Row, when a livery servant, of very 
stylish appearance;, entered and enquired, "Had Captain 
Wilson been there?" Mr. West replied that "he had 
not the pleasure of knowing Captain Wilson :" and then 
the servant stated, that " his master. Captain Marmaduke 
Wilson, intended to purchase some plate, and had ordered 
liini to go to Mr. .Wcjst's, and await his arrival there/* 
ile added, " lie is a fine-looking man, but he has lost his 
rigijt arm at Waterloo. 1 have to deliver a message in 
J>anie Street. You will easily know him when he comes; 
and please to* tell him that I shall be back in about ten 
minutoH." The servant departed, and very soon after his 
muftter mu<Iu his appearance. A complete militaire^ he 
displayed moustuohes, a Waterloo ribbon, and a frogged 
frouk*uoat ; but tlie right sleeve was empty from the 
til bow, and the culV was looped up to the breast. He in- 

Suirod for the servant, and seemed a little dissatisfied at 
\M foUow's absence. He then proceeded to inform Mr. 
Wttat that ho whs about to fix his residence on a property 
whioh he held in the county of Monaghan, and that he 
wjlhtd to unitu economy with respectability in his do- 
BValb. Mrangenionts. He had heard that Mr. West's 
^Ub of secoud«huud plate was very ample, and wished 
porohaM tome on which the crestings could be ob- 
aud the Wilson crest substituted, producing at 
time a silver suufT-box, on which a crest was 
ppmv«d| with the initials of Marmaduke Wilson beneath 

L' Tka Mrvaut had returned, and accompanied his 

SecmdzHand Plate, 37 

master through, the warerooms, conducted ty the pro- 
prietor, who succeeded in displaying tea services, salvers, 
&c., which met with Captain Wilson's approval, provided 
the prices were lower. The demands were reduced cop- 
siderably, as the customer urged that it was a dealing for 
" cash down." The charges amounted to one hundred 
and forty pounds, when the Captain said " he would not 
go any further for the present," and requested Mr. West 
to have the plate packed in a basket which the servant 
had brought, in order that Mrs. Wilson might see the 
articles before the crests were altered. The silver was 
directed to be treated as he desired, and he then turned to 
Mr. West and said, " You must be my amanuensis, and 
write the order to Mrs. Wilson for the cash, I shall send 
my man for the money, and when he brings it, you will 
let him have the basket." Mr. West took the pen, and 
wrote, at the Captain's dictation — 

''Dear Maria, 

'* I have bought some second-hand plate, of which, I think, jqii 
will approve. ' Send me, by bearer, £140^" 

He added — **Just put mj initials, M. W. Is it not 
very curious, Mr. West, that our initials are the same ? " 
^],le then took the pen .in his left hand, and made a rough 
kind of small semicircle ip the left-hand corner, which he 
designated his private mark. "Now," said he to the ser- 
vant, *' make all haste to your mistress, get the money, 
and fetch it here. I shall wait until you return, for you 
have not far to go." The servant departed, and the Cap- 
tain remained for about twenty minutes, and seemed very 
impatient at the fellow's delay. He expressed an opinion 
that perhaps his wife had gone out, and said that he would 
take a car and see what caused the delay, adding, ".When 
he brings you the cash you can let him have the hamper." 
The Captain then departed. The servant did not con^e 
for the plate, and it remained packed and ready for de- 
livery on the arrival of the purchase mouey, L^ite. \w 1\sa 
afternoon Mr, West went home, and \i«kN'\u^ ^\\i<i^ ^^ 

38 Twenty Tears* Recollections. 

asked by his wife, " What second-hand plate was it that 
you bought to-day ?" "I bought none," he replied, " but 
I sold some, and it was to have been taken away at once, 
but I suppose it will be sent for to-morrow." " And why," 
enquired Mrs. West, " did you send to me for one hundred 
and forty pounds ? Here is your note, which a servant in 
livery brought, and I gave him the money." 

The swindle was complete. The basket was never called 
for, nor could the defrauded party ever obtain any trace of 
the Waterloo Captain or of his livery servant. The 
reader need not suppose that the veteran delinquent was 
minus an arm. He was "made up" for the part which 
he was to play in the deliberate and deeply-planned villainy, 
and in all probability he had both his hands in full use, to 
take off his moustache and frogged coat in a few minutes 
after leaving Mr. West's premises. The transaction ex- 
cited much interest and some merriment. It afforded a 
subject for one of Burke Bethel's jokes. He said that 
whether the captain reappeared or not, he could never be 
designated otherwise than as off-handed in his dealings 
with Mr. West, 


There was another Dublin establishment in the gold, 
silver, and jewelry trade, and also belonging to a Mr. 
West. It was in Capel Street. I may mention an inci- 
dent connected with it of a very extraordinary nature. 
There were mills at Chapelizod, near Dublin, kept by a 
Mr. M*Garry, in which he had very powerful machinery for 
rolling metals. He was frequently employed to roll silver 
for Mr. West. In the year 1829, a silver slab, valued at 
£27, was delivered to his carrier at Capel Street, and the 
usual receipt was given for it. The slab was to be rolled 
into a silver sheet ; but when the vehicle in which it had 
been placed arrived at Chapelizod, the article was not to 
be found. In appearance it was not bright, having lain in 
store for some time after being cast. Advertisements and 
enquiries failed to discover it, and Mr. M^Gait^ ^^\^ V\& 

Law's Window. 89 

value to the owner. In 1845, it was brought to a silver- 
smith named Chapman, on Essex Quay, and offered for 
sale. Chapman stopped the article, and gave the bearer 
of it into custody. On an investigation before me, it ap- 
peared that a shoemaker who lived in Leixlip had foimd 
it on the road and taken it home with him. He never 
suspected that it was silver. He considered it to be pew- 
ter or zinc, and it was used for the purposes of a lapstone 
for sixteen years. How the person in whose possession it 
was foimd had ascertained its real quality did not appear, 
but he had purchased it from the shoemaker for half-a- 
crown. West's and M'Garry's books coincided as to the 
nature of the article, its value, and the time of its loss. 
The old slab was adjudged to M'Garry, who at once sold 
it to Chapman for the price he offered, £22. The shoe- 
maker expressed deep, and certainly sincere regret that he 
had never suspected the real value of his lapstone. His only 
consolation was, that the roguish fellow who induced him 
to sell it for half-a-crown, lost two shillings and sixpence 
by the bargain. 

law's window. 

Whilst shops profusely stocked with articles of the pre- 
cious metals and with costly jewels attract affluent and 
even extravagant customers, they also afford immense 
temptations to thieves and swindlers. No establishment 
in Dublin was superior in any respect to that in Sackville 
Street belonging to Mr. Law. On each side of the en- 
trance there was a window, consisting of a single sheet 
of glass, inside of which a most magnificent display of 
costly plate, gems, and watches tacitly demanded and 
obtained the admiration of all spectators. In the year 
1847, and in the afternoon of a pleasant May day, an 
elderly gentleman stood at the window next the corner of 
Eden Quay, and gazed with delight on the various splendid 
and tasteful productions inside. He had an umbrella, 
which he carried beneath his arm in a horizontal position^ 
And with the ferule end unluckily too n^a^t \)cifc ^q^'Oc^ ^<ifeN. 

40 Twenty Years' Ef collections. 

of glass. A yoting fellow came rapidly runnii^g along the 
footway, and violently jostled the respectable admirer of 
the splendid contents of the window. The glass was 
smashed by the point of the umbrella, and the mischief 
resulting from the collision only imparted greater celerity 
to tlie jostler's movements. He fled down Eden Quay, 
and was almost instantly out of sight. Mr. Law was in 
his shop, and along with some of his assistants seized on 
the proprietor of the intruding umbrella. The old gentle- 
man demurred to the imputed liability, and ascribed all the 
mischief to tlie ruffian who had rushed against him. Law 
was persistent, and demanded nine pounds for his frac- 
tured glass. He threatened to give the old gentleman in 
charge to the police. The latter became very indignant and 
excited, used extremely strong language, and even applied 
opprobrious epithets to those by whom he was detained. 
He said that he was a stranger, just arrived from England, 
to transact some affairs of importance connected with the 
purchase of extensive properties in the west of Ireland. 
He warned Law that he would bring an action, and look 
for ample damages, if he were not permitted to depart. 
He stated his name to be James Ridley, and that his resi- 
dence was in Lincoln's Inn Fields, London. Finding that 
• Law was about to send for a constable, he produced a 
Bank of England note for £100, and told the "obdurate 
scoundrel" to take the cost of his window out of that, but 
at his peril. Law disregarded the threat, deducted nine 
pounds, and gave £91 to Mr. Ridley, who departed, vow- 
ing vengeance. However, no proceedings were instituted, 
and subsequent enquiries after James Ridley in Lincoln's 
Inn Fields resulted in no such person being known there. 
The £100 note was ajorgery. 


Towards the close of the last century, a gaol for the 
city of Dublin was built, and its appearance had a great 
tendency to deter any person from incurring the liability 
o£ heoom'mg an inmate. Its soot-begrimed walls and 

Old, Newgate, 41 

rusty portal completely falsified its designation of New- 
gate, and its front constituted a considerable portion of a 
locality, the aspect of which suggested no idea of verdure, 
although it was called Green Street. It was a place re- 
plete with fatal memories, very few of which are worthy 
of being evoked, and it has been completely taken down. 
The sons of the gentleman who was governor more than 
fifty years ago were my schoolmates, and my associations 
with them made me acquainted with some incidents which 
may be worthy of narration. When Oliver Bond was 
under sentence of death for treason ; and whilst there was 
the strongest probability that the law would take its course, 
he was permitted, during the day-time, to occupy an upper 
apartment, the door of which was partly of glass. Mrs. 
Bond was as much with him as the rules of the prison 
allowed, and wj^s sitting in the room on the day when Mr. 
Michael William Byrne was executed as a united Irishman. 
The fatal procession had to pass close by the door of 
Bond's apartment ; and as it approached, Mr. Byrne re- 
marked to the sheriff, that Mrs. Bond would be greatly 
shocked by seeing a person pass to that scaffold on which 
her husband expected to suffer. Mr. Byrne then suggested 
that they should stoop and creep noiselessly by the door, 
so as to escape her observation. His wish was complied 
•with, and on reaching the drop, he turned to the sheriff, 
and remarked, with an air of great satisfaction, '* we man- 
aged that extremely well." This spontaneous solicitude 
to spare the feelings of an afflicted female, will aptly class 
with that of the gallant Count Dillon, who was one of the 
earliest victims of the Reign of Terror in France, and 
who, when he arrived at the guillotine, was requested by a 
female fellow-sufferer, to precede her, upon which ih^prenx 
chevalier saluted her with courtly grace, and stepped for- 
ward, saying, " anything to oblige a lady." 

In one of the back yards of Newgate, to the right of the 
entrance, was the place of confinement for the condemned, 
the walls of which exhibited initials, sometimes entire 
names of unhappy occupants. One, who suffered the ex- 
treme penalty of the Jaw nearly sixty yeaxs «i^o,lQt iot^xv^ 

42 Twenty Yeari Eecollections. 

notes of the Bank of Ireland, pencilled the following lines 
on the door of his cell : — 

" Unhappy wretch, whom Justice calls 
To bide your doom within these walls, 
Know that to thee this gloomy cell 
May prove, perhaps, the porch of Hell. 
Thy crimes confest, thy sins forgiven, 
Mysterious change ! it leads to heaven.** 

It is to be hoped that the soul of the poor prisoner ex- 
perienced the " mysterious change " which his untimely 
fate led him so fully to appreciate. 


gokke's watch. 

In the year 1810 a manufacturing goldsmith of high re- 
spectability, named Gonne, lived in Crow Street, Dublin. 
His establishment was noted for the superior execution of 
chased work, especially in watch cases, and he had occa- 
sionally extensive orders from the house of Roskill, of 
Liverpool, the reputation of which for watches and chro- 
nometers, was then, as it is still, extremely high. Mr. 
Gonne indulged himself in the purchase of a splendid gold 
watch of RoskiU's best make, and prided himself greatly 
on the possession of an article not to be surpassed either 
in exquisite ornamentation or accuracy of movement. He 
was fond of pedestrian excursions, and his hours of relaxa- 
tion were frequently devoted to a ramble along the low 
road to Lucan, which is certainly not inferior in picturesque 
scenery, to any other of the many beautiful localities in 
the vicinity of Dublin ; but on one night Mr. Gonne came 
home greatly disgusted with his promenade, and avowing 
a determination never again to set foot on that nasty road. 
He did not bring home his beautiful watch, and it tran- 
spired that a man, of small stature, had disturbed an 
agreeable revery by requesting to be accommo^aA.^^ mOa. 

Gonne'8 Watch. 43 

whatsoever money Mr. Gonne had in his possession, and 
that he also expressed great admiration of his watch, and 
insisted on the immediate delivery of that article. The 
propinquity of a pistol to Mr. Gonne's breast, induced a 
speedy compliance with the disagreeable demand. On his 
arrival in Dublin, Gonne declared that he had been robbed 
by a little tailor. He stated that the fellow's features were 
concealed by a veil, and that as soon as he got the watch 
and a small sum of money into his possession, he managed 
to ascend the wall of Woodlands demesne with surprising 
agility, and on it he seated himself cross-legged. He then 
addressed the victim of his depredation by name, and as- 
sured him that his watch should be safely kept, and that 
an opportunity should be afforded for redeeming it for ten 
pounds. Gonne apprised the authorities of the outrage 
which he had suffered. He declared that he never, to his 
knowledge, beheld the robber before ; that he did not re- 
cognise his voice, but felt satisfied that he was a tailor, 
from the manner in which he sat on the wall. An ex- 
perienced peace-officer who heard the description, agreed 
with Gonne that the delinquent was a tailor, and added 
that he knew the man. It appeared that there was a little 
knight of the thimble, of most remarkable activity, named 
Flood ; he was of dissipated habits, and was known at the 
racket-court in John's Lane, where his play was most 
astonishing. He rarely missed a ball, and none would 
encounter him in a match of rackets, unless at very great 
odds. Flood was sought for, but was not forthcoming. 
Several of the provincial towns were searclied in vain, and 
it was supposed that he had left the country, when he was 
apprehended, almost in the act of committing a highway 
robbery on the Rock-road, which at that time constituted a 
portion of the City of Dublin. His haunts were discovered 
and searched, and several articles of value, supposed to 
have been acquired by highway robbery, were found. 
There was a case quite sufficient for the conviction of 
Flood in the affair for which he was apprehended ; but it 
was deemed expedient to investigate sfev^i^o\)cv^\ 0£VdX';j^"?i»^ 
and amongst them the robbery oi Mi. Qioi^xi^^^V<^ "o^^* 

;44 Twenty Tears' Repqllections. 

nutelj detailed all the circumstances of his disagreeable 
adventure on the Lucan Koad, but he could not identify 
^he prisoner. He was then directed by the divisional 
magistrate of police, before whom the case was pending, to 
pass round to the rere of the bench and view a number of 
watches which were in a drawer, of which the magistrate 
had the key. His watch was not amongst theija. Flo9d 
was committed for trial, and sent to Newgate on two other 
charges, but the robbery of Mr. Gonne was not considered 
one on which an indictment could be sustained. 

At the period to which this narrative refers, there was 
in Ireland a Lord Lieutenant belonging to the highest rank 
of nobility. His tastes and amusements were rather un- 
like those of his successors. His personal undertaking 
was quite sufficient for the disposal of three or four bottles 
of claret after dinner. He was so good a judge of whisky- 
punch as to impart to Kinahan's LL its peculiar designa- 
tion and much of its popularity amongst ** choice spirits." 
He dined at Donnybrook fair, upstairs in a tent* visited 
John's Well in its pattern days, took oyster suppers at 
".Queen Casey's " cellar in Britain Street, patronized an 
occasional cockle party at Dollymount, superintended 
matches of single-stick in the riding school, witnessed 
what was then termed the " Royal Sport of Cock-fighting " 
in Clarendon Street; and his fingers. were no strangers to 
" the gloves." But his favourite amusement was harmless 
and graceful. He played rackets frequently in John's 
Lane, and took great pleasure in witnessing a match well 
contested by first-rat6 players. At the time of Flood's 
detection, his Excellency was making a tour through the 
south of Ireland, and after an interval of a few weeks, he 

♦ The proprietor of this tent was a person named Cheevers. 
Having received an intimation, a few days before the fair, that the 
Lor,d Lieutenant would, with a select party, dine in his tent, he 
had it constructed wi^h a lofting or first-floor, and a flight of steps, 
by which the Viceregal party ascended to their repast. On the 
succeeding days, whilst the fair lasted, the elevated apartment 
which had been honored by his Excellency was crowded to excess, 
and Cheevers received an ample remuneration for his very original 

Gonne^s Watch, 45 

returned to Dublin, to receive some English visitors of 
distinguished position and convivial tendencies. Amongst 
them was Lord Sydney Osborne, who prided himself upon 
hb skill at rackets, and who on the day of his arrival 
stated at the viceregal table, that he was open to play 
"any man in the world" for a thousand guineas. His 
Excellency immediately took up the wager, and engaged 
to tind a successful competitor for his noble guest. It was 
stipulated that the match should be played within three 
weeks, at the racket-court of the Kildare Street Club. On 
the following morning the Lord Lieutenant proceeded to 
John's Lane, and apprised the marker of the racket-court 
that he wished to find a little fellow whom he had fre- 
quently seen there, and whom he described as the most 
expert player that had ever come under his observation, 
as one who had distanced all his antagonists, but he had 
forgotten his name. 

*• My Lord,'* replied the marker, " I think your Excel- 
lency means Flood." 

'* Yes, yes, I now recollect the name ; 1 want him par- 
ticularly, for I have wagered a large sum on a match be- 
tween him and an English gentleman, and if he wins, I 
shall reward him amply." 

'* Murder ! murder !" exclaimed the marker, "your Grace 
must lose. Flood can't play your match, he is to he hung 
oh Saturday, He played rackets well, but he played some 
queer tricks, too. He used to go looking for watches and 
purses on the roads outside Dublin, and he was caught at 
last, just near Merrion churchyard. Baron George tried 
him, and he was found guilty. The judge told him to ex- 
pect no mercy, so he is to die at Newgate on Saturday." 

" 'Tis a d d business," said his Excellency. 

** Indeed it's likely to end that way," replied the marker, 
" for he was rather loosely conducted, and now he has but 
a very short time to make his soul." 

His Excellency departed greatly disconcerted ; he felt 
that he had been too hasty in his wager. His thousand 
guineas appeared to be hopelessly gone, and he could not 
bear to think how Lord Sydney Osborne would c\\\xck\a 'aX. 

46 Twenty Tears^ Recollections, 

a walk over. He dined that day in Stephen's Green with 
his very intimate friend, Sir Hercules Langrishe, to whom 
he took an opportunity of communicating his unpleasant 
predicament. To his great surprise, Sir Hercules did not 
appear to think that there was much difficulty in the 
matter, and he even intimated his willingness to back 
Flood for a hundred or two. " There is no danger/* ob- 
served the baronet, "of a change of ministry ; you will be 
Lord Lieutenant for some years ; so the sooner you give 
Flood a pardon, and set him to practise for the match, the 
better chance for your wager." 

" Could there be a memorial got up in his favor ?" 
suggested his Excellency. 

" It would not be advisable," replied Sir Hercules ; " it 
would make the affair a public topic. No, that would not 
do ; just send over a pardon to-morrow ; let Flood come 
to me. I shall procure liberty for the fellow to practise at 
the Shelbourne Barracks, and he also can get into the 
court at the club at early hours, as it is there that the 
match is to be played." 

It was soon known that Flood was saved. The motive 
was left to public ingenuity to discover, and, consequently, 
every reason except the true one was assigned. It was 
supposed by many that he had given some valuable infor- 
mation about a recent mail-coach robbery; but in the 
meanwhile, be had been made aware of the high opinion 
entertained of his skill as a racket-player, and the expec- 
tations that he would win the match. 

Full of gratitude for having been rescued from the 
gallows, he promised to win, and redeemed his promise. 
His noble antagonist was an excellent player, but in hand, 
eye, dnd agility, the tailor was greatly superior. The 
nobleman became agitated and lost his temper, which was 
speedily followed by his money. His aristocratic feelings 
were not, however, outraged by even a suspicion of the 
fact, that he was defeated by a little tailor, who, if the 
law had been permitted to take its course, would have 
** shuffled off his mortal coil " in front of Newgate ; and 
who had been liberated from the condemned cell only for 

Gonne'a Watch. 47 

the purpose of liberating a thousand guineas from the 
pocket of a duke's brother. 

His Excellency gave Flood fifty pounds and some good 
advice, suggesting a removal from Dublin and even from 
Ireland ; but Flojd was for some time unwilling to depart. 
He remained in a city where he could only be known as 
** the unhanged one," and where his character could not 
be retrieved. His trade was useless. He could not obtain 
any employment. His money was soon exhausted, and 
he had an insuperable objection to recur to his former 
habit of taking nocturnal strolls in quest of watches and 
purses. Unwilling to give the law another lien on his 
neck, he at length determined to leave Ireland as soon as 
he could obtain means of crossing the Channel. Mr. 
Gonne was rather surprised by receiving a visit frc»m him, 
and still more by the request of a couple of pounds. The 
indignation of a man who had been robbed of his watch 
and money exploded at once. He assured Flood of his 
sincere regret and deep disappointment at the gallows 
having been shamefully defrauded of its due. He then 
informed him, in terms more plain than polite, that he 
could not expect any contribution on the voluntary prin- 
ciple, but that a reasonable expenditure would be willingly 
incurred to procure a halter, if its application to Flood's 
neck was guaranteed. The *' unhanged one " bore all 
this very meekly, and said that he had a simple and in- 
telligible proposal to make, namely, that Mr. Gonne 
should lodge two pounds in the hands of a certain person, 
on condition that the money should be restored if the 
watch was not recovered by its owner ; but if the article 
was obtained for Mr. Gonne, Flood was to receive the de- 
posit, to enable him to leave Dublin for ever. 

This offer was acceded to, and the cash was lodged with 
Jack Stevenson of St. Andrew Street. Jack was a man 
of very extensive connections. He had nephews and 
nieces in abundance ; and whenever any of them wished 
to retire plate, jewels, or trinkets from the vulgar gaze, 
Jack, like an affectionate uncle, advanced^ and took charge 
of the valuable articles. He adorned tlie ^^^a^ \i^\.>«^^\!L 

48 Twenty Tears' Recollections. 

his front windows with the ancient crest of Lombardy, 
three golden apples ; and his transactions with his rela- 
tives were of such a particular nature, that they were 
recorded in duplicate. He had known Flood in his early 
days, before he had become an adept either in racket- 
playing or robbing. He consented to hold the money 
subject to the specified conditions; and then Flood and 
Gonne proceeded to the last place to which it might be 
imagined that the steps of the former would be voluntarily 
directed, namely, to the Police Office, where he had been 
charged, and from whence he had been committed. There 
he told Gonne to remain at the exterior door ; and as the 
Office was about to be closed for the day, he desired him 
to ask the magistrate when he came out, what was the 
exact time. Gonne complied with this direction, and His 
Worship readily, but rather too hastily, produced a watch. 
No sooner was it displayed than its appearance elicited 
the most disagreeable oath ever sworn before the " worthy 
ju^stice," for Gpnne instantly explained, " By G— ! 
that *s my watch." 

Gonne obtained his watch, and was with great difficulty 
persuaded* to refrain from bringing the transaction under 
the notice of the Executive. The system by which the 
magistrate managed occasionally to possess himself of a 
valuable watch or some other costly article, consisted in 
having two or three drawers wherein to keep the property 
found with highwaymen or thieves. If the prosecutor 
identified the delinquent, he was then shown the right 
drawer ; but if he could not swear to the depredator, the 
wrong drawer was opened. 

The magistrate to whom this narrative refers, was dis- 
missed in a short time after, for attempting to embezzle 
fifty pounds. 1 wish, for the honor of the profession 
of which I am proud to be a member, to state that he 
was not a barrister. Flood was afterwards for many years 
the marker of a racket court at Tottenham Court Road, 
London. He judiciously and wittily changed his name to 

The Major. 49 



I SHALL now advert to another Police magistrate whose name 
1 need not refrain from mentioning, inasmuch as although 
^is unpopularity was unparalleled, his name has never 
been associated with any imputation of a dishonourable 
or debasing tendency, such as was manifested in reference 
to Gonhe's watch. Henry Charles Sirr was for many 
years Town-Major of Dublin ; and through the insurrec- 
tion of 1798, and during the outbreak of 1803, he was 
peculiarly energetic and most unscrupulous in the exercise 
of his powers as a magistrate of Police, in which capacity 
he continued until his death in 1841. He was detested 
•by all those to whose opinions he was opposed, and whose 
designs and acts he was engaged in repressing or punish- 
ing. He was not respected by those of a contrary ten- 
dency ; for he unnecessarily and continually engaged per- 
sonally in enquiries, searches, and arrests, which a proper 
appreciation of his magisterial position would have in- 
duced him to leave to his subordinates. He was accustomed, 
during the insurrectionary times, to traverse the streets of 
Dublin or the suburbs, with some special attendants fol- 
lowing at a short distance. He carried pistols, and was 
also provided with a short heavy bludgeon. If a suspicion 
crossed his mind in reference to any person whom he 
casually met, his usual practice was to knock the indivir 
dual down, and then to ascertain if he had secured the 
right man. He was of considerable although indirect ad- 
Vantage to his colleagues and successor ; for, during his 
Y)iHcial career, the acts of his colleagues, if of an unpo- 
pular tendency, were attributed to the example he afforded, 
t)r to his supposed suggestions. His successor was judged 
'by the contrast, and his faults were considered as venial 
mistakes, whilst the Major's acts were only remembered 
to be stigmatized as wilful misdeeds. His courage has 
'been doubted, hat the imputation o£ co>Nect^\Qfe \a» \l^x. 

•50 Twenty Years* JtecoUections. 

fairly sustained. It arises from the prejudice which satis- 
fied itself that he eould not possess.any ^ood quality. His 
conduct at the apprehension of Lord Edward Fitzgerald 
did not evince either courage or cowardice. He entered 
the room after the conflict had commenced, and fired the 
fatal shot, in all .'probability, to save the life of his asso- 
ciate. He frequently, and without any necessity, risked 
his personal safety, and there is no sound reason for be- 
lieving that he was of a pusillanimous nature. 

In 1798 Sirr received information that a young man of 
most respectable family, who had involved himself in the 
insurrectionary movement of the period, had arrived in 
Dublin, and was concealed in the upper room of a house 
in Bull Alley. The Major proceeded, attended by several 
of his myrmidons, to the place, and entered a house on the 
right hand side from Bride Street, the lower part of the 
premises being a butcher's shop. He went up to the front 
two-pair room, and there surprised the accused party ly- 
ing on a bed, and partly undressed. He held a pistol to 
the young man's head, and commanded him to arise and 
surrender. The mandate was complied with, and the cap- 
tive apparently submitted to his fate. He arose and asked 
permission to wash his face and hands, which was accorded, 
and he then put on his coat, which the Major had pre- 
viously ascertained to have no weapons in the pockets. 
Suddenly the prisoner made a spring, throwing himself 
bodily against the window, which yielded to his force, 
and out he went. Sirr shouted and dashed down stairs, 
greatly impeded by his own assistants who were hurrying 
up on the alarm. The poor fellow who had adopted so 
desperate an expedient, met, in his fall, a clothes pole, 
and then came on some wooden shed-work which projected 
over the front of the shop ; the latter was rather crazy 
and gave away. He sprang to his feet unhurt, darted 
down the alley and escaped by one of the numerous pas- 
sages with which it communicated. Sirr hastened down to 
the Cocmbe, turned out the Poddle guard, and searched 
the neighbourhood, but without success. When the British 
government, after the campaign of Waterloo, formed i>ome 

The Major. 51 

regiments of lancers, they procured two Austrian officers, 
of ascertained capability, to impart a knowledge of the 
lance exercise to those regiments. One of the officers was 
the Bull Alley jumper. He took an opportunity of renewr 
his acquaintance with Sirr, and jocosely apologised for 
having terminated their previous interview so suddenly 
and unceremoniously. 

Sirr was once tricked into making himself instrumental 
in carrying out the punishment desired by an outraged 
father against a profligate son, and it occurred also in the 
unhappy year of 1798. There was a wealthy bookseller 
residing on Lower Ormond Quay, who had a son, his only 
child, bearing the same Christian name. Mr. Patrick 

W ,the father, was very indulgent. Mr. Patrick W , 

the son, was extremely vicious. His time was chiefly 
spent in society of the most objectionable description, and 
he was not particular as to the means whereby he made 
his father's money available for his licentious pleasures. 
He had been absent from the paternal roof for some weeks. 
His father had vainly sought to discover him, \vhen he 
unexpectedly met him in the street, and directed a storm 
of well-merited reproaches on the young reprobate. 

Young Pat stood submissively attentive to his parent, 
and allowed him to vent the first burst of his wrath, and 
when old Pat. closed his impassioned complaints by per- 
emptorily ordering him to go home, he mildly replied, ** I 
was going there, sir, to try if you would admit me ; I 
own it is more than 1 deserve, but give me one trial more 
before you cast4ne off: give me one more trial, and you 
shall not regret it." 

" You young villain ! where have you spent the last 
month ? " 

" I spent it as badly as I could, except the last week, 
and during that time 1 have been with Mr. Luke White, 
at Woodlands. 

" At Woodlands !" exclaimed the astonished old man, 
** Is it with Luke White, my oldest, my most valued friend, 
you have been ? " 

" Yes sir. This day week I was walking Irv. StQ.\l\^\N!% 

52 Twenty Year^ Recollections, 

Green, and Mr. White met me. I sought to avoid him, I 
own that, but he called after me, took me aside and ex- 
postulated with me about my habits and associates. He 
told me that I was breaking your heart, and that I must 
reform my life. He said that he grieved, as did all your 
friends, over the coming ruin of your hopes, and that he 
was determined, if possible, to avert it ; that you were 
his esteemed, respected, and highly valued friend. He 
then proposed that I should go out to him that evening 
to Woodlands for a week, and that in the peaceful retire- 
ment of that residence, he would try to bring me to a 
proper sense of duty to a worthy father. I yielded to his 
remonstrances, and accepted his invitation ; and having 
fepent the week with that excellent gentleman, I was going, 
by his direction, to throw myself upon my knees before 
you, and implore your forgiveness." 

"Oh!" exclaimed old Pat, "may heaven's choicest 
blessings be showered on him, my real, true friend, who 
felt for my misery, and has relieved it. Come, Pat, my 
darling boy, all is forgiven and forgotten. Happiness is 
in store for us both. You will be my pride and comfort. 
I can diiB contented if my eyes are closed by a sou whom 
I leave respectable in conduct and character." 

Father and son proceeded home ; and old Pat imme- 
diately sought all means to convince young Pat of his 
faults having been condoned. He was informed of the 
business transactions then pending ; and his father handed 
him a cheque for a considerable amount, and directed him 
to proceed to the bank, and pay some bills which were 
due that day. 

" Young Pat departed. He did not return; and the 
notary's messengers called in the evening with the unpaid 
bills. The miserable parent was only able to discover 
that his son had been seen, during the afternoon, in most 
disreputable society. Next morning old Pat waited on 
Mr. White, and thanked him most warmly for his exer- 
tions to reclaim the young reprobate by his advice and 
expostulations. " If anything could have produced a good 
iffect on hi/M^" exclaimed the agonized father^ "it would 

The Major. 55 

have been your advice, your example, and the contempla-. 
tion of the sweet scene and happy family to which your 
invitation last week " 

*' My dear sir," interrupted Mr. White, " there is a great 
delusion on your mind. I have not seen your son, nor 
have I had any communication whatever with him for. 
more than twelve months." 

The old gentleman staggered to a seat. A terrible con-' 
vulsion shook his frame. Then supervened that which, 
i? fearful to witness in woman, but doubly horrible in 
man, hysterical tears and sardonic laughter. At length 
the fit terminated. Old Pat arose and took his leave. 
He walked away with surprising energy, and his counte-' 
nance assumed a calmness beneath which was concealed 
nothing less 

'^ Than the stern, single, deep, and wordless ire 
Of a strong human heart, and in a sire." 

Old Pat sought a private interview with Major Sirr, and 
confided to him strong suspicions that young Pat was 
compromised with the United Irishmen, and that if closely 
and properly interrogated, he could disclose a great deal, 
especially as to some depdts of pikes and other weapons 
intended for insurrectionary purposes. He affected to' 
stipulate for the utmost secrecy as to the Major's infor- 
mant, protested that he regarded the rebels with the ut- 
most horror and detestation, and that he had no idea of 
favoring a change in public affairs detrimental to those 
who, by unremitting industry, had realized property. He 
suggested that his son, when arrested, should be brought 
to the Custom House, which, at that time, was in Essex 
Street, and directly opposite to his own residence on' 
Ormond Quay. Sirr entered into his views, complimented 
him on his prudence and loyalty, and took immediate 
measures for the arrest of young Pat, who, when cap- 
tured, was delivered to some of " Beresford*s Troop," to 
exercise their inquisitorial talents in eliciting all he knew 
about men whom he had never seen, aw^ a^^ \.Ci ^^^Vygaa* ^t 

54 Twenty Years* Recollections, 

. which, in all probability, he had never heard. The young 
man was perfectly free from all political or religious in- 
fluences. Beau Brummell might as justly have been ac- 
cused of complicity in the designs of revolutionary scms 
culottes^ as young Pat of any sympathy with other pursuits 
than the midnight orgies and debasing revels of the worst 
of both sexes. 

In the Custom House yard he was interrogated, and 
his denials only produced louder and steraer demands. 
Truth, strict truth, issued from lips to which it had been 
hitherto a stranger. The triangles stood before him, and 
all his protestations of innocence were uttered to ears 
worse than deaf. He was stripped, tied up, and lashed 
lintil he swooned; then taken down, and recalled to a 
sense of existence by restoratives, only to be put up again, 
until, at last, he lay before his torturers, a lacerated and 
semi-animate frame, incapable of enduring further suffer- 
ing. They cursed him as an obdurate, callous villain, from 
whom nothing could be extorted ; and whilst his terrific 
punishment was in process of infliction, his father was 
looking on, from the window of his residence. The 
wretched youth was conveyed home, and a considerable 
time elapsed before he was sufiiciently recovered to pro- 
ceed to America, whence he never returned. His father 
made no secret of the means he adopted to punish young 
Pat and to trick the Major. 

Sirr was occasionally humorous. He announced to one 
of his acquaintances the fate which was expected to befal 
Theobald Wolfe Tone, in the laconic phrase — " Mr. Tone 
is to a-tone to-morrow in the front of Newgate.*' Galvin, 
the hangman, having applied to Sirr for his interest and re- 
commendation to procure a small pension, laid before him 
a memorial, which he was desirous of having forwarded 
to Government under the Major's auspices. In it the 
veteran executioner submitted that for many years he had 
acted as finisher of the law in the County and City of 
Dublin, with frequent visits for professional purposes to 
towns on the Home and the Leinster circuits. That age 
and inGrmities were rendering him incapabV^ o? Goxitm>\vQ% 

The Major. 55 

hiB public duties <; and that he humbly besought a small 
pension for the support of his declining years. " Tom,** 
said the M'ajor, " you should have stated in your memo- 
rial- that during your official career you discharged your 
duties to the perfect satisfaction of all parties concerned.** 
** I thank you, Major," replied the stupid old wretch, " FU- 
get it altered, and put thiu in." One of Sirr's colleagues, 
a hamster, was remarkable for speaking' in a low voice, 
and with a great lisp. He was indebted to the Major for 
rtie nickname of " Mississippi." 

At a funeral in St. Worburgh's churchyard, and close 
by the vaults in which the body of Lord Edward Fitz- 
gerald had been deposited^ the Major was present. After 

the interment, a Mr. S. , whose person was invariably 

extremely slovenly, approached him and remarked, " I' 
suppose, Major, that you cannot be here without thinking 
of Lord Edward:** 

" My friend," was the reply, "I am at present thinking 
of you, and wondering from whence you derive such an 
ample supply of soiled shirts." 

In 183 1, during Earl Grey's administration, Sirr attended' 
meetings convened in favour of Parliamentary Reform, and 
moved resolutions of the most liberal tendency. He voted 
at the city election for the Reform candidates, and was 
twitted by the late Thomas Ellis for having deserted his 
party and forgotten his principles. His answer was simple 
and true — " 1 am totally unchanged ; I have always sup- 
ported the Government, and I shall continue to do so." 

When the piers which form Kingstown harbour were 
iii course of constniction, the supply of stone was derived' 
from immense quarries at Killiney, and conveyed along 
a tramway, on which, near the quarries, there were slopes, 
down which the loaded waggons required no impelling 
power, but rather to be restrained, by breaks, from acquir- 
ing a dangerous velocity. Major Sirr was fond of collect- 
ing natural curiosities, especially of a geological nature ; 
and he frequently visited Killiney in quest of spar forma- 
tions, which were occasionally f6und there. He was by no 
meam niggardly in his dealings mt\\ lW«^«t ^w^^t^ \\i^i^i. 

56. Twenty Ytari ReeoUectioru. 

still he could not conciliate them into -a feeling of kind-r 
ness or respect. One day he was proceeding up the tram^ 
way slope, when the discharge of artillery at the Pigeoa 
House fort attracted his attention. He turned and looked: 
in the direction of the firing, just at the moment when 
a train of loaded wagons was about to descend. Beings 
right before them, he would have been utterly destroyed 
ki a moment, but the breaksmen saw nis perilous situation,, 
and applied the requisite pressure, stopped the train, and 
saved the Major. Several persons witnessed his danger 
and the prompt means by which it was averted. On the 
transaction becoming known in the quarries, there was an 
immediate strike. All work was stopped, and a determi- 
nation was unanimously avowed to insist on the dismissal, 
of the breaksman. No specific complaint was preferred, 
against the individual whose expulsion was required. The^ 
Harbour Commissioners deputed Mr. Hickman Kearney, 
to enquire into the grounds and reasons for such an 
extraordinary demand. He went to the quarries and 
called on the workmen to come forward and explain the. 
cause of their animosity to the breaksman. The only 
reply was that " he should go." It appeared, on reference- 
to the clerk of the works, and to the overseers, that the 
obnoxious man was honest, sober, diligent, and attentive, 
to his duties ; and it was strongly urged that no accident 
had occurred at the slope since his appointment, and that 
be had, by his presence of mind and promptitude, saved 
Major Sirr's life. This produced a general exclamation, 
of " That's the reason he sha'nt stay amongst us. What^ 
business had he to save the Major ?" The poor breaksman* 
would have lost his employment, but for an old and in- 
fluential workman who interfered in his favor, and induced, 
the others to forgive him, provided he faithfully promised 
never to do the like again. 

, The Major was peculiarly unpopular amongst the hack- 
ney carriage drivers, and yet he was not a severe judge of 
tlieir delinquencies, for he dismissed nearly half the com- 
plaints preferred before him, and the average of his fines 
YfW three shillings and sixpence ; still, they hated him ; 

Committals, 57. 

and although he preached to them very many little ser-r 
mons in the carriage court, and occasionally sought tO' 
impart Scriptural knowledge to their minds, the benighted- 
*'• jarveys" detested the magisterial apostle. At last " the 
Major" died. His illness was very brief, and his in- 
disposition commenced in a covered car. He drove home, 
to the Lower Castle-yard, and never rallied, but sank in 
a few hours. The story was circulated that he actually 
died in a covered car ; and for some time after his decease,: 
I was occasionally treated to the hearing of complaints, 
preferred by covered car-drivers against outside carmen,, 
for usurping their turns, and defrauding them of their 
jobs. . It was, and is, very unusual for carmen to summon 
members of their own body ; but in the cases to which I 
refer there was a peculiar grossness assigned to the; offence, 
" Yer worship," the plaintiff would exclaim, '* I would not 
mind him stumping me, but he roarea out to the people 
that were going to hire me that my car was the very one, 
the owld Major died in, and yer worship, I could^nt be ea?-) 
pected to forgive that" 







It is pleasing to observe decided improvements in insti-» 
tutions of importance to the community. In the time of 
Major Sirr, the coarsest language was addressed from the, 
bench of the police courts, not only to prisoners on serious . 
charges, but to persons prosecuting or defending sum- 
monses. If a magistrate of police were now to apply 
terms of abuse, even to the most disreputable characters, 
he would most certainly be severely censured, or perhaps 
dismissed. The personal characters. oi tke Y^e^^\i\> m'd.*^^^ 

S8 Twenty Yhars^ Recallecttons. 

trates of Dublin ensure the observance of the stricteslR 
propriety in their courts. I may remark, also, that im-. 
prisonment cannot now be inflicted in the reckless manner' 
formerly adopted. On the day when my magisterial func- 
tions commenced, I called for a list of the existing com- 
mittals to the Dublin prisons from the Head Office. I 
was astonished to find that one man had been detained) 
for the previous fifteen years, another for thirteen, andi 
a third for ten, in default of sureties to keep the peace^ 
and be of good behaviour. I ordered the immediatet 
discharge of those persons, and two of them expressedi 
great dissatisfaction at being thrown upon the world 
from which they had been so long estranged. These 
committals were signed by Major Sirr. There: is nO' 
danger of persons being now sent to prison, and forgotten- 
there ; for if such a committal were sent, through ignorance 
or inadvertence, the Board of Superintendence would soon: 
draw attention to the fact of a prisoner's subsistence being' 
charged on the public for an illegal or unreasonable period. 
At the time when the commitals to which I have alluded 
came under my notice, I happened to meet with some 
reports from a Governor of the Richmcnd Bridewell ad- 
dressed to the magistrates: of the Head Police Office dur- 
ing the time when that prison was under their exclusive 
caontrol and supervision. In one of these documents,, the 
writer states the building to be in good repair, and per- 
fectly adapted for the safe custody of its inmates, and that 
every ward was in a clean and wholesome condition. He 
proceeds to describe the good effects produced by the uso 
he made of a barber, who, for riotous and disorderly con- 
ductj had been committed for two months^ with hard 
labour. He had not put the delinquent to stone-breaking 
or oakum picking, but employed him in shaving and hair- 
cutting the other prisoners, the effect of which was to 
improve their appearance, and to impart cleanly tendencies. 
He then expresses his regret that the barber's term of im- 
prisonment had elapsed, and that the prisoners had become 
less cleanly-looking from remaining unshaven and uncropt. 
He turminates ther report by earnestly a^id mo^t. t«^i^<i^ 

Dwyer the Rebel 59' 

ftiUy suggesting to " their worships " to avail themselves 
of the first opportunity that may offer for committing 
another barber for the longest term in their poicer. 

For some time after my appointment to the magistracy, 
Alderman John Smith Fleming was my senior colleague 
at the Head OflBce. He had a very vivid recollection of 
the rebellion of 1798, and was secretary to his uncle. 
Alderman Thomas Fleming, Lord Mayor of Dublin in 
that year. Amongst other anecdotes of that period, I 
have heard him relate that Dwyer, one of the insurgent 
chiefs, had prolonged his resistance for some months after 
the insurrection had been generally quelled. In the moun- 
tains of Wicklow, with a few but faithful followers, he 
evaded every exertion for his capture. Mr. Hume, of Hume- 
wood, near Baltinglass, was particularly anxious to secure 
Dwyer. He was the commander of a corps of yeomanry, 
and a magistrate of the County of Wicklow, which he 
also represented in Parliament. Of very extensive in- 
fluence, he easily procured the co-operation of the civil and 
military authorities of his own and of the adjoining dis- 
tricts. Still Dwyer was not to be had. At length an 
arrangement was made that the yeomanry corps of the 
western portion of Wicklow should assemble, at an early 
hour on an appointed day, at Humewood, and should set 
out to scour the country, exploring every recess, and leaving 
no place, on hill or plain, unransacked for Dwyer. Yeo- 
manry from Wexford, Carlow, and Kildare were to move 
on preconcerted points, so as to intercept the fugitive if he 
should attempt to shift his quarters. A day was wholly 
spent in a most fatiguing search. It seemed as if Dwyer 
had transformed himself into a bird, and flown beyond 
sight or reach. However, in a short time, Mr. Hume 
received an intimation, that if Dwyer*s life would be 
spared, and that he would be permitted to leave the 
country, he was willing to surrender. With the assent of 
the Government, Mr. Hume acceded to this offer. Dwyer 
was brought to Dublin, and the required undertaking and 
consequent immunity from punishment were acknow- 
ledged before the Lord Mayor. Tla« ou^Xvn ^«^ Yve^-^ 

BO* Twenty Yeari Recollections, 

and generously treated by Mr. Hume during the few days 
which preceded his departure for America ; and at a final 
interview Mr. Hume said — '* Before we part, Dwyer, will 
you tell me how you avoided capture on the day that we 
scoured the whole country in search of you ?" *' Sir," 
replied Dwyer, " I had information of your intentions, so 
I went to Humewood on the night before, and when the 
yeomen were paraded on your lawn, before they started in 
search of me, / was looking at them from your hay^loftJ* 

For some years previous to 1842, the number of persons 
"found drowned" in the County of Dublin was much 
greater than might be expected either from the extent of 
the population or the nature of the locality. It was in- 
deed true that one canal, the Grand, extended along the 
greater part of the southern boundary of tlie Irish metro^ 
polls, and another, the Royal, was similarly situated in 
the northern direction ; but although these canals afforded 
great facilities for the termination of human existence, 
whether by suicide or accident, the cases of drowning 
were far more numerous than could be fairly attributed to 
violence, intoxication, lunacy, or carelessness. It would 
also seem that the southern canal was much more destruc-. 
tive to human life than the other, and that the bank which 
was in the county possessed some attraction for the corpses, 
for they were almost always taken out at the county side. 
It happened on the 11th of March, 1842, a few minutes 
before 10 o'clock, a.m,, that a young man named Kinsella, 
who was employed in a distillery at Marrowbone Lane, 
was proceeding, after his breakfast, from his residence at 
Dolphin's Barn to resume his work, when, on approaching 
the canal bridge, he was stopped by a constable, who in- 
formed him that the coroner required his attendance, as 
a juror, on an inquest that was about to be held on the 
body of an old man, just taken out of the canal. Kinsella 
vainly expostulated against the detention. He was told 
that it would be a very short business, for there were no 
marks of violence on the corpse ; it would merely be a 
case of "found drowned." The man was accordingly, 
sworn on the inquest, and the coroner having informed 

Sergeant Greene's Horse. ^1 

the jttry that they were required by law to view the body, 
thev were conducted to the apartment where it lay. As 
soon as Kinsella beheld the corpse, he rushed forward, 
dropped on his knees beside it, seized the stiff and frigid 
hand, and exclaimed, " My father ! my poor, dear father ! 
We buried him on this day week, decently and well, in the 
Hospital Fields. He had no business in the canal ; and 
them old dothes never belonged to him ; he. never wore a 
stitch of them." The coroner and the doctor vainly en- 
deavoured to persuade Kinsella that he was mistaken ; 
and his recognition of his parent produced an enquiry, 
which resulted in bringing to light some very extraordinary 
practices on the part of the county functionary and his 
medical satellite. They were paid by public presentment, 
according to the number of inquests held ; and they had 
recourse to the expedient of having bodies disinterred, 
clothed in old habiliments, and thrown into the canal. 
Such bodies were almost always discovered very soon, and 
were taken out on the county side of the canal, to swell 
the coroner's next presentment for inquests on persons 
who were "found drowned." A crush from a passing 
barge afforded an additional profit, as the bruises consti- 
tuted a plausible reason for a post mortem examination, and 
thereby doubled the doctor's ordinary fee. The coroner 
and his associate were convicted of conspiring to defraud, 
and consequently were deprived of their functions. It 
must be acknowledged that, if their mode of procuring 
inquests was not honest, it was certainly novel and in- 
genious. If the practice had been known in the days of 
Hamlet, it would have furnished an additional reason for 
his exclamation : — 

"To what base uses we may return, Horatio.** 

In the year 1842, and for several subsequent years, by 
an arrangement with my colleagues, I undertook the 
Inagisterial duties connected with the licensing and regu- 
lation of job and hackney vehicles, and the adjudication of 
eompiaii3t5 in the carriage couYt. Al tVi^ xivcofe n<V«^ \ 

62 Twenty Ymri Recollections, 

assumed those duties, Richard Wilson Greene (whose 
high legal acquirements ultimately obtained for him the 
position of Baron in the Court of Exchequer) was in very 
extensive practice at the Bar. An issue from Chancery 
was sent to be tried at one of the principal towns on the 
Leinster Circuit, and he was specially retained for one of 
the parties. A very efficient reporter, named Christopher 
Hughes, in whose character there was great comical eccen- 
tricity, was employed to take down, in shorthand, the 
trial of the issue. Early in the succeeding term, it was 
arranged that a consultation should be held at the house 
of the senior counsel, in Leeson Street, and Mr. Hughes 
was requested to meet Mr. Greene at the Courts, with his 
notes, and to accompany him to the consultation. The 
appointed time had nearly arrived, when Greene and 
Hughes hurried oflf from the Four Courts. Having passed 
out to the quay, the former hailed an outside car, on which 
they sat beside each other, and the driver was ordered to 
make all possible haste to Leeson Street. The horse was 
a fine-looking animal, but he stepped high and was very 
slow. Mr. Greene urged the driver to hasten on, and 
after two or three expostulations, he remarked to the Jehu 
that the horse was unfit for a jaunting car, although he 
was large and strong, but that he would suit well for a 
family carriage. The driver, a lad of eighteen or nineteen 
years of age, exclaimed, " Bedad your honor is a witch ! " 
" What do you mean ? " asked Mr. Greene. '* Oh," replied 
the carman, *' I mane no oflSnce, but yer honor is right 
about the baste ; that's what he is. Til tell yer honor a 
saycret. The baste is a carriage horse belonging to one 
Counsellor Greene, and the coachman has a hack-car and 
figure on Bride Street stand. He ginerally manages to 
have something the matther with one of the horses, and 
that gives him an opportunity to get a good deal of work 
out of the other in the car." Although Mr. Greene was 
very angry at what the driver had communicated, he did 
not disclose that he was the owner of the horse. He 
whispered to Hughes, and requested him to give the driver 
his name and address, but to leave him unpaid. Whea 

Christy Hughes. 6S 

they anived at Leeson Street, Greene at once entered the 
house of the senior counsel, and warned the servant against 
telling his name to the carman. Hughes had a scene, and 
was treated to a copious supply of opprobrious epithets, 
but he did not pay, and merely gave his name and address. 
He was summoned, at the owner^s suit, before me ; and 
when the case was called the proprietor of the vehicle, in 
very energetic terms, demanded exen^plary costs against 
the defaulting hirer of his car. His denunciations were 
suddenly interrupted by the appeaiance of Mr. Greene; 
and there was abundant merriment, of which I had a full 
fihare, when it transpired that the learned Queen's Counsel 
had hired a hack-car drawn by his own horse. The coach- 
man ran out of court, and I afterwards heard that he never 
applied for wages or discharge. The incident attained 
great publicity, and afforded much amusement in *' The 
Hall" amongst the long-robed fraternity. One day Greene 
said to some of his brethren that he believed the fellow 
had left Dublin, but that he was strongly tempted to send 
the police in quest of him. ** Send your horse," observed 
the facetious Robert Holmes, '^for he is best acquainted 
with the carmarCs traces J* 

Mr. Hughes, whose name appears in the preceding 
anecdote, deserves to be noticed upon his own merits. He 
was frequently engaged in reporting proceedings in the 
Police Courts, and we never had occasion to impute any 
inaccuracy to his statements. He was always ready to 
assist any of his brethren of the ^^ press-gang," and to 
suggest a palliation or excuse for their casual errors. I 
frequently indulged him with permission to sit in the 
magistrate's room whilst he was transcribing his notes, and 
I have been often amused with his remarks and statements, 
which were strictly true, and in which he never concealed 
his own professional expedients or mistakes. He men- 
tioned that he was directed to go to one of the dinners of 
the Malachean Orphan Society, where O'Connell presided, 
but having indulged in his potations at a luncheon, he for- 
got the requirement for his services at Mrs. Mahony's 
great rooms in Patrick §treet. *' 1 slei^V" m^V^^'''' Nis^.>i^ 

64 Twenty Tears' Recollections, 

'about 11 o'clock, and then I recollected myself, so I went 
quietly to the office and got the file of the previous year, 
and, with a little alteration, it did for the day's dinner as 
•well." He often mentioned what he designated his great- 
est mistake. He described it thus : — " On the concluding 
day of George the Fourth's visit, in 1821, he went to 
Powerscourt, where he got a splendid reception from the 
noble proprietor. Lord Powerscourt had caused reservoirs 
to be constructed above the waterfall, in order that when 
his Majesty went to see it, the sluices might be drawn^ 
and a tremendous cataract produced. I went down in thd 
inorning and viewed the place, and minutely noted all the 
preparations. I then drew on my imagination for a de- 
scription of a second Niagara, and put into the mouth of 
the royal visitor various exclamations of delight and sur- 
prise. I sent off my report, and it appeared in due time, 
but unfortunately the king was too much hurried by other 
arrangements, and did not go to the Waterfall at all, but 
drove direct from Powerscourt House to Kingstown, where 
he embarked. I have been often quizzed for my imagina- 
tive report, but, nevertheless, I stated what the King ouglU 
to have done, and what he ought to have said, and if he 
did otherwise, it was not my fault." 

I was extremely fortunate, at my accession to magis- 
terial office, to find myself provided with clerks who could 
not be surpassed in diligence, integrity, or intelligence. I 
shall particularize Messrs. Pemberton and Cox. The for- 
mer was the son of a previous chief magistrate, at whose 
instance he was appointed. The latter had been for several 
years in America, and had been engaged by Jacob Philip 
Astor in forming the settlement of Astoria, in Washington 
Irvine's description of which he is most favorably men- 
tioned. He was a man of great literary taste, and was an 
accomplished linguist. Their performance of official duties 
never required from me, nor to my knowledge from any 
of my colleagues, the slightest correction or reproof. 
Pemberton was a solicitor, and was promoted in 1846 to 
the Clerkship of the Crown for the King's County. He 
had been many years before- an assistant to Messrs. Allen 

Recorder Walker, 65 

and Greene, the Clerks of the Peace for the City of Dublin. 
I shall have to notice hereafter some amusing incidents 
connected with Cox, but shall give precedence to a few 
anecdotes derived from Pemberton, and arising from his 
acquaintance with the old Session House in Green Street, 
and the records theie, to which, I suppose, he had full 

Towards the close of the last century an aid-de-camp of 
the then viceroy was indicted, at the Quarter Sessions, for 
the larceny of a handsome walking-stick, and also for 
assaulting the gentleman who owned it, and who was, 
moreover, a Frenchman. The transaction arose in a house 
of a description unnecessary to be particularized. An 
affray took place, the Frenchman was kicked down stairs, 
and lost his cane, which was alleged to have been wrested 
from him by the aid-de-camp. The charge of larceny was 
absurd, and the grand jury ignored the indictment. But 
the assault could neither be denied nor justified, and the 
traverser submitted, pleaded '* guilty," and was fined five 
pounds. That punishment did not cure his propensity for 
beating Frenchmen and taking their sticks. On the 21st 
of June, 1813, he beat Marshal Jourdan at Vittoria, and 
captured his baton ; and on the 18th of June, 1815, at 
Waterloo, he beat the greatest Frenchman that ever lived, 
Napoleon Bonaparte. I do not feel justified in naming 
the delinquent aid-de-camp, and perhaps the reader may 
think ii quite unnecessary that I should. 

More than half a century has elapsed since the oflSce of' 
Becorder of Dublin was held by Mr. William Walker, 
whose town residence was in Lower Dominick Street. 
One day a groom, in the service of a Mr. Gresson, was 
tried before him, for stealing his master's oats. The 
evidence was most conclusive, for the culprit had been 
detected in the act of taking a large bag of oats out of his 
master's stable, which was in the lane at the back of the 
east side of Dominick Street. When the prisoner was 
convicted, the Recorler addressed him to the following 
effect : — ** The sentence of the Court is, that you are to 
be imprisoned for three calendar monl\ia\ au^ ^\. Ocv^ ^ws^^ 

66 Twenty Tears* Recollections. 

mencement of that term you are to be publicly whipped 
from one end of that lane to the other, and back again ; 
and in the last week of your imprisonment, you are to be 
again publicly whipped from one end of that lane to the 
other, and back again ; for I am determined, with the 
help of Providence, to put a stop to oat-stealing in that 
lane** His worship's emphatic denunciation of oat-stealing 
in thai lane, arose from the circumstance of his own stable 
being the next door to Mr. Gresson's. 

The same civic functionary was a great amateur farmer. 
He had a villa and some acres of land at Mount Tallant, 
near Harold's Cross, and prided himself upon his abun- 
dant crops of early hay. On one occasion he entered the 
court to discharge his judicial duties at an adjourned ses- 
sions, and was horrified at hearing from the acting Clerk 
of the Peace (Mr. Pemberton) that there were upwards of 
twenty larceny cases to be tried. " Oh ! " said he, " this 
is shocking. I have three acres of meadow cut, and I 
have no doubt that the haymaking will be neglected or 
mismanaged in my absence." In a few minutes, he in- 
quired in an undertone, " Is there any old offender on the 
calendar ? " 

" Yes," was the reply, ** there is one named Branagan, 
who has been twice convicted for ripping lead from roofs, 
and he is here now for a similar offence, committed last 
week in Mary's Abbey." 

" Send a turnkey to him," said the Eecorder, " with a 
hint that, if he pleads guilty, he will be likely to receive a 
light sentence." 

These directions were complied with, and the lead-stealer 
was put to the bar and arraigned. 

" Are you guilty or not guilty ? " 

"Guilty, my lord." 

*' The sentence of the court is that you be imprisoned 
for three months. Remove him." 

Branagan retired, delighted to find a short imprison- 
ment substituted for the transportation that he expected. 
As he passed through the dock, he was eagerly interro- 
gated by the other prisoners — 


Recorder Walker. 67 

• " What have you got ? " 

** Three months." 

" Three months — only three months ! " they exclaimed ; 
Oh I but we're in luck. His lordship is as mild as milk 
this morning. It 's seldom that he 's in so sweet a 

*' Put forward another," said the Recorder. 

" Are you guilty or not guilty ? " 

« Guilty, my lord." 

** Let the prisoner stand back, and arraign the next.*' 

Accordingly, the prisoners were rapidly arraigned, and 
the same plea of " Guilty " recorded in each case. Pre- 
sently it was signified to his lordship that the calendar was 
exhausted. All the thieves had pleaded guilty. 

*' Put the prisoners to the front of the dock," said he ; 
and they, were mustered as he directed. He then briefly 
addressed them — 

"The sentence of the court is that you and each of 
you be transported for seven years. Crier, adjourn the 

Branagan had been thrown as a sprat, and had caught 
the other fish abundantly. This incident might afford a 
useful, or perhaps it should be termed, a convenient sug- 
gestion, to other judicial functionaries, especially on cir- 
cuit when there is a crowded dock. 

When Mr. Pemberton received the appointment of 
Clerk of the Crown for the King's County, Mr. Cox, who 
had been for several years the second clerk in the Head 
Police Office, succeeded to the chief clerkship. He pos- 
sessed very extensive knowledge of the world, and was 
h.ighly educated. Many incidents connected with him are 
worthy of being recorded. 1 may mention here that the 
Police Laws of the Irish Metropolitan district are, to the , 
highest degree, complex, voluminous, involved, and per- 
plexing. In the English Metropolitan district two statutes 
regulate, one the Police Force, and the other the Police 
Courts. In Dublin we have a statute passed in 1808, 
another in 1824, a third in 1836, a fourth in 1837, a fifth 
in 1838, a, sixth in 1839, a seveiit\i in V^Vi, ^xA %.\l kax. 

68 Twenty Ytavi Recollections, 

in relation to public carriages, which may also be termed 
a police statute, in 1848. They contain three hundred 
and sixty-six sections, and may be designated as disgraceful 
to the several executive governments which have left them 
unconsolidated and uncodified. When the 5th Yic. sess. 
2, Chap. 24, passed, it recited the other Acts to which I 
have alluded, and then its preamble proceeds to heap or 
bundle them all together in the following terms :— 

'* Be it therefore enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, 
by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and 
1 emporal, and Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, 
and by the authority of the same, that the said recited Acts of the 
forty-eighth year of the reign of King George the Third, of the 
fifth year of the reign of King George the Fourth, of the session of 
Parliament holden in the sixth and seventh years of the reign of 
King William the Fourth, of the first year of Her present Majesty's 
reign, and of the sessions of Parliament holden respectively in the 
first and seeond, second and third, and third and fourth years of 
lier present Maje8ty*s reign, and this Act, shall be construed 
together as one Act ; and that all and every the enactments and 
provisions therein contained shall apply and exterTd to this Act, 
and to all Convictions, Warrants, Distresses, Proceedings, and 
Thins^s, made, taken, or done in execution of this Act, as fully to 
all intents and purposes as if the same were herein repeated and 
re-enncted, save in so ftir as such enactments and provisions are 
inconsistent with or contrary to this Act, or as such enactments or 
provisions may be altered by this Act, or other enactments or 
provisions made in lieu thereof.*' 

Mr. Cox commented on this farrago by observing that 
** its framer would have an easy death, for that if he was 
affected with ague, or even if he were hanged, he would 
be too lazy to shake in the former or to kick in the latter 
case." In the blank leaf of a bound copy of the Police 
statutes, the following was written in reference to the pre- 
ceding quotation : — 

"The preamble saith the forty-eighth of George the Third is 
one, that mast be tack'd to another Act, the fifth of George his son. 
Then whilst you*re at it, just take a statute, the sixth and seventh 
session, of him who did own the British throne, the next in due 
propjession. Then the first of the reign of our present Queen, 
and then the first and second ; the next that occuttvi^ yf«A x.Vi« 

The FoUce Statutes— Preamble. 69 

second and third, then the third and fourth is reckoned. All these 
in fact, to the present Act, you must fasten tight as leather. 
There maj be flaws in many a clause, but, take thein all together, 
it must be your plan, as well as you can, to deal with your numer- 
-ons doubts, or be the employer of some shrewd lawyer, to shew 
joa their ins and outs. If your puzzled brain, you rack in vain, 
nntil you fume and curse; if they bother you, why they've 
bothered me too, so take them for better, for worse." 

There were, and I suppose still are, many complaints 
preferred before divisional magistrates, at the Police 
Courts, in reference to claims on Benefit or Friendly 
Societies, for allowances in cases of sickness, or for money 
payable to members or their representatives, under family 
visitations. Whenever any summonses on such subjects 
were disposed of by me, I called for the transaction and 
account-books, and required them to be produced at the 
commencement . of the proceedings. On one occasion a 
quire of copy paper, stitched in a cover of brown, in a 
condition absolutely dirty, and in which the entries were 
irregularly scrawled, was handed up to me. I strongly 
censured such a slovenly mode of recording their proceed- 
ings as very discreditable. On hearing the complainant, 
I considered that the case was very well suited for an 
arbitration, and the parties offered no objection to have it 
fio disposed of ; but they disagreed on each of the other 
societies which were suggested for the purpose of deciding 
it. However, one of the persons concerned said, that he 
would be satisfied to leave the matter entirely to Paddy 
Flannery, whom he saw present, and whom he considered 
** the most knowledgable man in all Dublin on such a 
business.** The others concurred, and I directed Mr. Cox 
to indorse on the copy ♦f the summons a reference by me, 
with the consent of the parties, of all matters in dispute 
between them to the aforesaid Flannery, I proceeded 
with some other business ; and the indorsement having 
been made, I signed it without any hesitation, and it was 
given to the late Mr. Charles Fitzgerald, who was con- 
cerned in the case, but in whose honor and probity all 
parties who knew him fully confided. In a day or two 
'after, I waa talking to him, dum^ a ^«vi \si\v\\i^s."?^ ^ 

'70 Twtfivty J ear 8^ Recollections. 

leisure, and he showed me the indorsement which I had 
signed. It was as follows : — 

''This Benefit Society, which keeps no proper hook, evinces im" 
propriety deserving a rebuke. As further litigation on each part 
they decline, no other observation is requisite on mine. 'Tis left 
to Patrick Flannery to judge of every fact, and in whatever 
manner he thinks right they're bound to act. My order I reserve 
until he makes out his award, and when he does, at once I will 
the rule of Court record.** 

Dr. Ireland was, for many years, the principal surgeon 
of the Dublin Metropolitan Police. He had to inspect 
the recruits, and satisfy himself of their size, health, 
mental capacity, and bodily strength being suitable to the 
service in which they proposed to engage. Cox said that 
the Dublin Police was in one respect, very like to Howth 
Harbor, as no one could get into either without passing 
" Ireland*s Eye." When the railway was being made 
from Dublin to Wicklow, he said that its course through 
the County of Dublin was extremely inharmonious, for 
it went first to a T>\xii-drum, proceeded to a Still-or^on, 
and then attained to a Bray. 

Mr. Cox came into the Police Court one morning after 
the custody cases had been disposed of. He brought 
forward an elderly female whom he stated to be desirous 
of making a statutable declaration before me, and which 
she had brought already drawn. There was a peculiar 
expression in his countenance as he suggested that I 
might, perhaps, be pleased to peruse the document pre- 
vious to its official reception. It was made under circum- 
stances which I shall briefly mention. A young man 
named Dempsey thought fit to embrace a military life, 
and enlisted in the 97th Regiment. He did not give his 
paternal name, but adopted the maiden name of his 
mother, and was enrolled as Peter Moran. He served for 
some years in India, but died there from the effects of 
sun-stroke. Some arrears of pay and a share of prize- 
money were due at the time of his decease ; and his 
widowed mother applied, as next of kin^ to obtain the 

Mendicancy. 71 

amount. The War-OflSce authorities did not understand 
how Peter Moran came to be the son of Anne Dempsey, 
The declaration to which Cox slyly drew my attention 
was intended to afford an explanation of the grounds on 
which the claim was preferred, and it, moreover, afforded 
an instance of a martial disposition being as early in its 
inception as the birth-acquired tendency of poetic inspira- 
tion. The declaration was as follows : — 

" Police District of Dublin ^ i, Bridget Carey, of Fade Street, 
Metropolis, to wit, | in the City of Dublin, widow, do 
hereby solemnly declare that I am a midwife, and have been such 
for the last thirty-five years ; and I further declare that abort 
twenty-seven years a^^o, I attended Anne Derapsey who was then 
living in Little Longford Street, in her confinement, and, with 
God's assistance, I then and there safely delivered her of the soldier 
in dispute^ and I make this declaration for the information of the 
Secretary-at-war, and the other authorities of the War Office, &c." 

Cox remarked, with an assumption of gravity which 
was irresistibly comic, " I suppose, your worship, that it 
is not necessary to describe the uniform or accoutrements 
in which ' the soldier ' made his natal appearance/' The 
document was retained by me, and another was substi- 
tuted, in which the deceased was not accorded the distinc<^ 
tion of having been ** bom a soldier." 



I THINK that some useful information may be blended 
with amusement by offering to my readers a few anec- 
dotes in reference to mendicancy and the laws intended 
for its repression. Two persons were charged before me 
at the Head Police Office, in 1843, with begging in the 
public streets. One was detected in Castle Street and 
the other in Palace Street. They were male and female, 
and stated themselves to be brother aud sistvit. ^^vO^a^ 

72 Twenty Years* Recollections. 

denied the commission of the offence. Having been 
searched at the station-house, the man was found to have 
£300 in his possession, and the woman had £180. I do 
not recollect what names they gave, but I am sure thej 
were not the real ones. They were committed, each for 
a calendar month, with hard labor ; but during the period 
of their imprisonment their subsistence was charged on 
the rates of the city of Dublin, and the £4.80 were re- 
turned to them at their discharge. I have been informed 
that the law of Scotland authorises the support of 
vagrants, when committed to gaol, to be defrayed from 
money found in their possession. If such be the case, I 
would suggest to our Irish Members to have the law of 
this country, in cases of vagrancy, assimilated to the 
Scotch system as quickly as possible. 

Very soon after the occurence which I have mentioned, 
a gentleman who resided at Kingstown, arrived there by 
train between seven and eight o'clock, p.m. He was 
walking up. the Forty-foot Road, when he was accosted by 
a man of humble but decent appearance, who kept by 
his side whilst addressing him. " I came out, sir,** said 
this individual, ^* early in the day, on an appointment 
with Mr. Herbert, of Tivoli Terrace, as he promised to 
let me have a few pounds that he owes me ; but I found 
that he had to start suddenly for Bray on some particular 
business, and he left word for me that he would be back 
about ten o'clock, so I have to wait : and I declare, sir, 
that I had only enough when I left home to get a return 
ticket, and I have not had a bit to eat since morning. 
Might I ask you for as much as would get me a crust of 
bread and a mug of milk." On reaching George's Street, 
the gentleman handed him a sixpence, and received the 
expression of an earnest prayer for his earthly prosperity 
and eternal happiness. On the following evening, the 
gentleman arrived at the same time, proceeded up the 
same road, and not being recognized, was accosted by the 
same person, who told the same tale, concluding with a 
wish for ** the crust and mug of milk." A constable 
happened to be in view, and the hungry applicant >NtA 

Mendicancy, 73 

arrested and charged as a vagrant beggar. He had two 
ten-pound notes and three of five pounds, with eighteen 
shillings in silver and copper coin. The vagrant stated 
his name to be Richard Bryan, and a most extraordinary 
document was found on him. It was soiled and partly 
torn, but it was signed, **Yonr loving brother, John 
Bryan," was datecl, ** Borris, August 30th, 1843," and 
contained a suggestion which was fully acted on, and 
which I could not allow to escape my recollection. 

Here it is : — 

" We have got in the barley all right, and we are goin^ at the 
oats to-morrow. I had to lend the horses to-day to Mr. Kimmis. 
I couldn^t refuse, for you know he is a good warrant to obleege us 
when we want a turn. Nolan is bothering about the rent. He is 
very cross. You must see and make it out for him, if you were 
even to hegfor it" 

One month's imprisonment, with hard labour, provided 
the mendicant with some " crusts *' and ** mugs of milk '* 
at the cost of the county. The delinquent did not, I be- 
lieve, resume his solicitations within our district. The 
office sergeant who escorted him, with some other pri- 
soners, to Kilmainham, told the clerk at Kingstown on 
the following morning, that Mr. Bryan stigmatized my 
decision as " most uncharitable and disgusting." 

I did not find mendicancy so persistent in any part of 
the police district as in Kinjrstown. If a vagrant was 
brought up and punished for begging in Rathmines or the 
Pembroke township, or if the detection occurred at Inchi- 
core, or in the more respectable parts of the city, it was 
not at all probable that the beggar would be soon found 
again in the same locality. The Kingstown vagrants, as 
soon as they were discharged from Kilmainham, generally 
started off to return and resume their solicitations at the 
piers and jetty, or abotit the streets and terraces, which 
were more devoted to healthful recreation than to profes- 
sional or commercial affairs. I have no doubt that mendi- 
cants from distant places receive more at Kingstown or 
Bray, from visitors whom they recognize, or who recognize 

74 Twenty Tears^ Recollections. 

them, than would be given to them if both parties were a( 
home. A lady with whom I was personally acquainted, 
and whose family residence was near Carlow, has several 
times, in my presence, given sixpences to beggars who 
belonged to her own neighbourhood, and I have heard 
her tell them that Kingstown was a better and mor^ 
lucky place for them than ever they would find Carlow to 
be. I shall close my observations on street begging, by 
deliberately stating from my personal and official experi- 
ence, that not one penny can be given to any mendicjant on 
our thoroughfares in real, efficient, and merited charity. I 
would now warn my readers against another kind of beg- 
ging, which avails itself of very systematic and elaborate 
means, and sometimes displays considerable educational 
acquirements, namely, written applications to charitable 
individuals to alleviate dire distress or succour unmerite4 
misfortune. I know that this system is extensively prac- 
tised in London, and I have heard that it is reviving in 
Dublin. I use the term " reviving," because it was com-* 
pletely crushed here in 1844 by the intelligence and activity 
of the detective division. At that time it was discovered 
that a confederacy of impostors had been formed in 
Bridgefoot IStreet, and that the members of this nefarious 
association were levying contributions on all in whose 
dispositions they had ascertained charity and credulity to 
be united. Forty-one of them were arrested and brought 
before me, and I committed them for trial on charges of 
" conspiring to defraud, obtaining money under false pre- 
tences, and forgery at common law." They were, how- 
ever, consigned to Newgate, exactly at the time when the 
State prosecutions against O'Connell had been commenced ; 
and it was the received opinion in police quarters that 
they owed their escape — for they were not prosecuted— 
to a feeling on the part of the attorney-general of that 
period, that ail his attention was demanded in bringing 
down the eagle, and that none of his energies could be 
spared to scatter a flock of kites. But they were not 
relinquished by the detectives, and were brought in detail 
under the castigation of the law until the confederacy was 

Mendicancy, 75 

broken up. Their begging letters and petitions were 
addressed to all whom thej considered likely to yield the 
slightest attention to their re'quests. These productions 
were termed in their slang *^ Slums,'* One impostor repre-. 
sented that she was a clergyman's widow, with four female 
children, the eldest only eleven years of age ; that her 
pious, exemplary, and most affectionate partner had died 
of malignant fever, contracted whilst whispering the words 
of Christian consolation to the departing sinner, and im- 
parting the joyful assurance, that the life flickering away, 
the socket glimmer of a mere earthly light, would be re* 
kindled in a lamp of everlasting duration and unvarying 
brilliancy. "That resigned to her suffering, and adoring 
the hand from which she had experienced chastening, she 
was not forbidden to hope that the blessed spirit of charity 
would be manifested in her relief, and in shielding her 
helpless, artless babes from the privations of distress in 
their infancy, and from the still more fearful danger of 
being, in advanced youth, exposed to the snares of sin and 
its depraving consequences. A contribution, however 

small, addressed to Mrs. , at No. — Bridgefoot 

Street, Dublin, would, it was respectfully hoped, be ac- 
corded by Lord , or. Mr. or Mrs. , whose well- 
known, though unostentatious benevolence, must plead 
the poor widow's apology for such an intrusion. Another 
was an unfortunate man, who for many years had earned 
a respectable livelihood as a commercial agent, and sup- 
ported a numerous and interesting family by his industry 
and intelligence, but having unfortunately been in the 
County of Tipperary, when a contested election was in 
progress, he unguardedly expressed a wish for the success 
of che Conservative candidate, and although not a voter, 
he was set upon by a horde of savage ruffians, and beaten 
so as to produce paralysis of his lower extremities, and 
that now nothing remained for him but to entreat the 
humane consideration of one who could not, if the public 
testimony of his, or her generous disposition, was to be 
credited, refuse to sympathize with a parent whose help- 
lessness compelled him to witness, wiih uus^^sii^iii^^^^Sixv^v 

76 Twenty Teart^ Recollections. 

the poignant miseries of the offspring he had hoped, hy 
his honest exertions, to have supported and reared, without 
submitting to the galling necessity of soliciting that aid 
which nothing but the most absolute destitution could 
reconcile him to implore. A military lady announced 
herself as the widow of color-sergeant Robert Maffett, 
who having served faithfully for twenty-three years, the 
four last having been in India, had been severely wounded 
in a decisive battle in Scinde, and when invalided and 
pensioned, was unfortunately drowned at Blackwall, in 
consequence of the boat which was conveying him ashore 
being accidentally upset. That she and her eight poor 
orphans had no resource on reaching her native city, 
where she found that all her relations had died or emi- 
grated, and where she was friendless and alone, but to 
throw herself upon the charitable feelings of one whose 
character emboldened her to hope that the humble appeal 
of the soldier's widow, for herself and her poor orphans, 
would not be unavailing. These and a thousand other 
alums were manufactured in Bridgefoot Street, alias Dirty 
Lane, not an unsuitable name for the locale of such pro« 
ceedings, and they were invariably accompanied by lists 
of subscriptions, and magisterial or municipal attestations, 
admirably got up in the first style of forgery. In the first 
case to which I have adverted, the " hapless widow " 
succeeded in getting five pounds from the Lord Chief 
Justice of Ireland (Pennefather). In the instance of the 
** military wido w," Lady Blakeney was lightened of three 
pounds. Another slum was circulated by a scoundrel who 
represented himself to be the son of a gentleman in the 
south of Ireland, of an old family, and of the pristine 
faith ;. that he had been educated at Louvain, had an 
ardent wish to become a Catholic clergyman, and that one 
of the most distinguished dignitaries of that church was 
inclined to ordain him, but his father had died in debt, 
without leaving him the means of providing even the most 
humble outfit for such a vocation. One of his missives 
produced the effect of relieving an alderman's lady of five 
pounds sterling, which the excellent and worthy matron 

Carriage Court Gases, 77 

piously suggested might be useful in providing the embryo 
priest with vestments. 

This confederacy was not confined to Dublin. Its 
branches extended through Leinster, Connauprht, Munster, 
and in almost every important town in England its con- 
nections were established. It is, however, very curious 
that the Scots and our Northern countrymen were left 
comparatively free from its attacks. Why ? Is it because 
the rascally crew conceived the natives of Scotland and 
Ulster to be more cautious or less benevolent than their 
respective Southern neighbours ? The reader may judge 
for himself; but swindlers are not, in general, very wrong 
in their estimate of character or disposition. 

Thq head -quarters of the society were in an obscure 
country town in an inland county of Ireland, and there 
the materiel of the association was seized, according to my 
recollection, in April, 1844. There was found at the 
source of their system, a chest of very elegant manufac- 
ture, and containing, in compartments, admirably executed 
counterfeits of the public seals of Cork, Waterford, 
Limerick, Sligo, Drogheda, Dublin, Liveipool, Bristol, 
Hamburg, Havre, and New York. These were used to 
seal forged certificates and attestations, which were trans- 
mitted for use to more populous places ; but the seals 
were cunningly kept in a remote, and for a long time, an 
unsuspected locality. 



Whfk T assumed, by an arrangement with my colleagues, 
the regulation of the publ'c vehicles, and the disposal of 
c«»mplaints in the Carriage Court at the Head office, I 
announced my inflexible determination to cancel the licence 
of any driver who was proved to have been drunk whilst 
in charge of his vehicle on the public thoroughfare. I 
required the fullest proof of t\\e offetvc^, \o -^VySsv \ 

78' Twenty Years* Recollections, 

awarded the highest punishment. I am happy to say that 
such cases were by no means frequent, but there were 
some, and they generally occurred at funerals. A Rath- 
farnham carman was summoned before me and was con- 
yicted, not only on the clearest evidence, but by his own 
admission. He was about my own age, and I remembered 
that when I was about eighteen years old, I was one day 
swimming in a quarry-hole at Kimmage, where the water 
was at least twenty feet deep, and was suddenly seized 
with very severe cramps in my left leg, I kept myself 
afloat and shouted for help, but I was unable to make for 
the bank, when a young fellow who had been swimming, 
and was dressing himself, hastily threw off his clothes, 
plunged into the water, and pushed me before him to the 
side of the quarry. He saved my life, and I now beheld < 
him in the person of the convicred carman. 1 related 
the circumstance from the magisterial bench, and then 
cancelled his licence, and remarked to those who were 
assembled, that when I treated the preserver of my life so 
strictly, others could not expect the slightest lenity at my^ 
hands if they transgressed in the same way. The poor 
fellow left the court in great dejection, and when my duties 
for the day were over, I dropped in to my friend Colonel 
Browne, the Commissioner of Police, and mentioned the 
circumstance to him. He said, '* You cancelled his licence, • 
but I can give him a new oiie, and he shall get it to-mor- ■ 
row." The licence was accordingly renewed, without 
causing me the slightest dissatisfaction. 

Most of my readers are aware that the Richmond 
Bridewell, which is now the common gaol of the City of 
Dublin, is situated near Harold's Cross ; and that on its 
front is inscribed, " Cease to do evil. Learn to do well." 
Ar eeoNoaUn named Doyle, who lived at Blackrock, was 
sxtmiftoned before me on charges of violent conduct, 
abusive language, and extortion. He was a man of very 
good character, and the complainant was a person of the 
worst reputation, who had been convicted of several 
misdemeanors of a very disgraceful nature. Frauds and 
falsehoods were attributed to him as habitual and \Yi\^\.^<^ 

Carriage Court Cases. 79 

rate practices. He was sworn, and then lie described 
Doyle as having been most abusive and insulting in his 
language, as having threatened to kick him unless he paid 
much more than the rightful fare, and as having extorted 
an extra shilling by such means. The defendant denied 
the charges totally, and declared that the accusation was 
false and malicious. He then asked me to have Inspector 
O'Connor and Sergeant Power called and examined as to 
the complainant's character, and whether he was deserving 
of being believed on his oath. From xny own pcirsonal 
knowledge of the complainant's reputation, I willingly 
acceded to the demand, and desired that the required 
witnesses should be called from the upper court, where 
they were both attending. Whilst we were waiting their 
appearance, Doyle made a speech ; it wa? very brief, and 
1 took it down verbatim ; he said : — 

** Your worship, if I get any punishment on this man's 
oath, it will be a wrong judgment. The Recorder knows 
him well, and he would'nt sintence a flea to be kilt for 
back-biting upon his evidence. He has took out all his 
degrees in the Harold's Cross college ; and if, instead of 
sending me to the Cease to do evil hotel, you had himself 
brought there, the door would open for him of its own 
accord, for there is not a gaol in Ireland that would refuse 
him. He swore hard against me, but thanks be to God, 
he did not swear that I was an honest man, for there is 
nobody whose character could stand under the weight of 
his commendation,* 

On the evidence of O'Connor and Power, I dismissed , 
the charge, and subsequently spoke of the case, and re- 
peated Doyle's speech in festive society. When Boucicault 
produced his interesting Irish drama of Aira-na-pogue 
at the Theatre Royal, I was one of his gratified audience, 
and was greatly surprized at hearing the speech which had 
been originally delivered before me in the Carriage Court 
by the Blackrock carman, addressed to the court-martial 
by Shawn-na-poste, to induce a disbelief of the informer 
by whom he was accused. I subsequently ascertained 
that it had been given to Boucicault b'j ouft \?\i^ ^<3Vi^\ 

80 Twenty Tears* Recollections, 

fully appreciate its originality and strength, my gifted 
friend, Dr. Tisdall. 

The Dublin carmen are far from being faultless, but, as 
a class, I found them generally very honest. Whilst I 
discharged the carriage business, I knew instances of 
considerable sums of money and articles of value, which 
had been left in their vehicles, being brought in and deli- 
vered up to the police. I do not know how such pn)perty, 
if unclaimed, is now disposed of ; but in my time, I inva- 
riably, after the expiration of twelve months, had it deli- 
vered, subject to charges for advertising, &c., to the person 
who brought it, I may mention one very extraordinary 
incident. Before the opening of the Great Southern 
and Western Railway, the Grand Canal Company ran 
passenger boats to the towns of Athy and Ballinasloe, 
A boat for the latter place left Portobello each day at 
two o'clock, A Rath mines man, who was owner and 
driver of a covered car, was returning home one morning 
about 1 1 o'clock, when he was hailed, in Dame Street, by a 
respectably dressed man, who engaged him to drive about 
town, and to be paid b}^ the hour. The hirer stopped at 
several establishments and bought parcels of woollen, linen, 
pliiid, and cotton goods, as also a hat and a pair of boots, 
for all of which he paid in cash. There was merely room 
for the hirer in the vehicle along with his ample pur- 
chases. Finally, he directed the driver to go to Porto- 
bello, adding that he intended to leave town by the 
pasage-boat at two o'clock. When the car arrived at the 
end of Lennox Street, the driver was ordered to stop. 
The hirer alighted and told the driver to go round by the 
front of the hotel and wait for him at the boat. The 
order was obeyed, and the carman waited until the boat 
started, but the hirer did not appear. The driver ap- 
prized the police of the circumstance, and, at their sug- 
gestion, he attended the two boats which left on ^ the 
following day, but no one came to claim the goods. They 
were brought to the police stores and advertised, the 
hirer was described and sought for in various hotels and 
2od^ing-houses, but without any result. It was ascertained 

Dublin Carmen, 81 

at the establisbments where the parcels were purchased 
that they cost twenty-seven pounds, and the carman 
ultimately got them on paying some small charges. He 
had not been paid his fare, nevertheless he was not dis- 
satisfied. A rare case amongst his fraternity. 

When it was proposed to have a hackney fare for six- 
pence, " for a drive with not more than two passengers, 
direct, and without any delay on the part of the hirer, 
from any place within the municipal boundary to any 
other place within the same," I refused to sanction such a 
regulation. I considered that it would, in many instances, 
be a most inadequate payment for the employment of a 
vehicle. I suggested that the fifteen municipal wards 
should form three districts of five wards each, and desig- 
nated, Southern, Middle, Northern. I proposed that a 
drive entirely in one of those districts should be a six- 
penny fare, that from South or North to Middle, or vice 
versa J should be eightpence, and that North to South, or 
vice versa, should be tenpence. My suggestions were not 
even considered, for the carmen published advertisements 
that they were desirous of giving cheap locomotion to the 
people of Dublin, but that the magistrate refused to allow 
them to take small fares. 1 sent for the *' runners," as 
the attendants on the stands were termed, and told them 
that I should no longer object to the sixpenny fare which 
was proposed. I added that it was the carmen's own act, 
and, to use a homely phrase, " as they had made the bed, 
nothing remained for me but to compel them to lie in it." 
The by-law was no sooner in operation than numerous 
cases pf its violation were brought before me. I fined 
each, if I thought it fully proved, in the maximum penalty 
of two pounds. One delinquent was extremely urgent to 
have a smaller penalty inflicted. I recognized him as 
having been present when I used the phrase which I have 
quoted, and reminded him that he had been fully warned. 
He replied, '* Yes, yer worship, we did make the bed, and 
you promised to make us lie in it, hut we never thought that 
it would be so heavUy quilted" 

I held that any stop or deviatioix iiom \)aa ^vc<i^\.\\aa 

82 Twenty Yeara^ Reeollections, 

between two places, at the hirer's instance, voided the six- 
penny contract, and entitled the driver to additional re- 
muneration. 1 often availed myself of a sixpenny lift, 
and was taking one in which I passed the Shel bourne 
Hotel, in front of which there was a ** hazard," or branch 
stand for five or six cars or cabs. It was considered very 
objectionable for a disengaged vehicle to stop alongside a 
hazard and thus obstruct the carriage way. I observed a 
jarvey committing this offence, and desired my driver to 
" hold a moment." I said to the offender, *' If a constable 
takes your number fur obstructing, you will not escape for 
less than ten shillings." I then bid my man to go on. 
He replied, " Yes, yer worship, and it would serve that 
fellow right to have him punished, for he is after putting 
your worship in f »r another sixpence to ///e." 

Two of my daughters had gone to make some purchases 
at the establishment of Messrs. Todd and Burns, in Mary 
Street. They were engaged to spend the afternoon at a 
house in Leinster Streef. Rain was falling, and the elder 
beckoned to the driver of a covered car who happened to 
be passing. They got into it, and desired him to go to 
No. 14 Leinster Street. When they arrived, the elder let 
her sister pass before h$r into the house, and then she 
offered a sixpence to the carman. He declined to take it, 
and said that she should give ** the father or mother of 
that." She asked how much did he demand ? and the 
reply was " a shilling at least." She then said that she 
would get half-a-crown changed in the house, and bring 
him a shilling, but she added *' that she would speak to 
papa about it." ** Musha, who is papa?" said he. " Mr. 
Porter," was the reply. She went in, got the change, and 
came back with the shilling, but he was gone. He pre- 
ferred giving her a gratuitous drive to having my opinion 
elicited in reference to the transaction. 
. A cavalry regiment, if I recollect rightly it was the 
** Scots Greys," occupied the barracks at Island Bridge in 
1854, One day an outside jaunting-car was waiting in 
the bajTack-yard, and the driver was standing on the step. 
Ife ivas a few yards fiom the quarlexs ot -a Cv^Vavw B , 

Dublin Carmen, 8*3 

who was reputed to have a private income of £15,000 per 
annum. The oflScer was amusing himself witli a little 
gun, which discharged peas and leaden pellets by deto- 
nating caps with greater force than the captain was aware 
of. He shot at the carman, and the pellet passed through 
his overcoat and reached his back, giving him a smart 
blow, but without penetrating the skin. The driver was 
looking round, and expressing his displeasure, when he 
received a second shot, which, striking the calf of his leg, 
lodged in the flesh. He instantly whipped his horse, 
drove rapidly away, and betook himself to the Mealh 
Hospital, where the shot was extracted. He summoned 
the officer before me, and when the facts were stated, I 
expressed an opinion that the act was most unjustifiable, 
that a wjinton and very severe assault had been committed, 
but that I thought it originated more in a spirit of foolish 
fun than in any wish to injure the complainant, and as it 
was a misdemeanor, the parties might come to an under- 
standing, which would render further proceedings unne- 

The captain accosted the carman — " Will you take one 
hundred pounds ?*' 

*' Of coorse, I will, yer honor, and Fll never say another 
word, even if you war to shoot me afjin." 

Two fifty-pound notes were handed to the delighted 
complainant, who then said to me — 

*' The business is settled, yer worship, and I can only 
say that when I was hit, although it gave me a great start, 
I felt satisfied it was a rede gintleman that shot me." 

I advised the captain to discontinue the sport of jarvey- 
shooting. Cox complimented him on his generosity, 
adding that he ought to have got a large covey of such 
game for the price he paid. I regret to add that the 
money did not improve its recipient. He relapsed into 
habits of idleness and drunkenness, lost his licence through 
misconduct, and was reduced to complete destitution. 

A gentleman, who lived in Baggot Street, came to 
Exchange Court one morning for li\\\ \)UX>^o^vi q^ x'i^^vi\'v\XN% 
^t his coach'housa had been enlered, a^\\^\i^>Aft?^<i'^^^i^ 

84 ^Twenty Years* Recollections, 

means of false keys, aod that a set of cushions, adapted 
to an outside jaunting-car, had been abstracted. He de- 
scribed them as white cord material with green borders 
and seams. A detective mentioned that he had seen 
cushions of the description on a car which had been 
brought for inspection, and the licence of which had been 
suspended on account of its unseemly condition. The 
car was then in Dame Street, and a further enquiry even- 
tuated in the discovery on it of the articles which had been 
supposed to have been abstracted. The owner of the car 
was a brother of the gentleman's servant who had lent his 
master's cushions to pass the inspection. The car licence 
was cancelled ; but 1 believe that similar tricks were fre- 
quently played on similar occasions. 

For upwards of ten years I have been estranged from 
the Dublin Police Courts. I cannot speak as to the habits 
and characteristics of the carmen of the present time. I 
have already stated that, according to my experience and 
recollection, they were honest and sober. 1 can add that 
I knew many instances in which members of their class 
manifested generosity, kindness, and courage. A man 
belonging to New Street stand went to the fair of St. 
Doulagh's, and expended his savings in the purchase of a 
fine-looking horse that appeared in a sound condition, but 
on whose leg there was a slight scar. In about a week 
after the fair, the beast exhibited some very extraordinary 
symptoms, and at last became most furious and unruly. 
He dashed into a shop window, and injured himself so 
much as to make it necessary to kill him. It was the 
opinion of a veterinary practitioner that he had been bitten 
by some rabid animal, and had taken hydrophobia. The 
other carmen promptly subscribed a sum sufficient to 
defray the damage done to the shop, and to procure ano- 
ther horse for the man who vainly sought to ascertain the 
former owner of the one that he bought at St. Doulagh's. 
1 am aware that previous to the establishment of the fire 
brigade in Dublin, the drivers on a car- stand would leave 
two or three of their number to mind their horses and 
yehicleSf and &pply themselves to work the engines and 

Dublin Carmen. 85 

extinguish fires in their vicinity. Many acts of heroism 
on the part of carmen have occurred on our quays and at 
Kingstown, in saving, at their own imminent risk, persons 
in dancer of dr9wning. 

Having noticed some very good qualities, I must remark 
on the scarcity amongst them, according to my experience, 
of veracity. When a carman was summoned by a con- 
stable he almost invariably met the accusation by a direct 
contradiction. If called on to answer for being shabbily 
dressed or dirty in his apparel, he bought or borrowed a 
good suit of clothes, shaved, put on a clean shirt, and 
stated boldly to me that he was just in the same attire 
when the policeman " ^vrote him." If the summons was 
for being absent from his beast and vehicle, he insisted 
that he was holding ** a lock of hay " to his horse all the 
time. If the complaint was for furious driving, the 
defence was that '^ the baste was dead lame, that it was 
just after taking up a nail, and was on three legs when he 
was * wrote.' " If it was alleged that the horse was in a 
wretched condition, and unfit to ply for public accommo- 
dation, he expressed his surprise that any fault should be 
found with a horse that could " rowl " four to the Curragh 
and back without ** turning a hair." Whatever statement 
was made for the defence, it evinced imaginative power, 
for the plain, dull truth was hardly ever permitted the 
slightest admixture in the excuse offered. Mr. Hughes, 
whom I have mentioned in some earlier pages, was in the 
carriage-court one day, on an occasion when an old man 
named Pat Markey, formerly belonging to the Baggot 
Street stand, made a statement utterly at variance with all 
probability, and directly opposed to the evidence adduced 
against him : however, on the prosecutor's own showing 
the case was dismissed, as the charge was not legally sus- 
tained. On leaving the court, Hughes asked Pat why he 
did not tell the truth at first, as it would have been better 
for him ; upon which the other exclaimed — ** Musha, cock 
him up with the truth ! that's more than I ever towld a 
magistrate yit." A delinquent seldom mentioned the 
oSence for which he was punished \ \ve ^<&tv«t^^ ^xi^'Sk^v 

8C Tventy Years' R( collections, 

tuted for it the inducement which led to its commission. 
If he went into a tobacconist's, and while he made his 
purchase, his horse moved on, and was stopped by a con- 
stable, who summoned the driver, the latter when asked 
what he was lined for would reply, " for taking a blast of 
the pipe." If, on a Saturday evening, he betook himself 
to a barber's shop to have the week's growth taken off his 
chin, and incurred a penalty for being absent from liis 
vehicle, he said, '* the polls wrote him " for getting himself 
shaved. And on Sunday morning, if a devotional feeling 
prompted him to get ** a mouthful of prayers," whilst his 
beast remained without any person to mind it, upon the 
public thoroughfare, he expressed his indignation at a con- 
sequent fine ** for going to Mass." 

1 found it impossible to adapt the law, as it existed in 
my time, so as effectually to compel the carmen to keep 
themselves in cleanly, respectable attire, or their vehicles 
in proper order. When summoned and fined, their com- 
ments evinced the inutility of the punishment. I have 
said to one, " Your car has been proved to be in a most 
disgraceful state, and I shall fine you ten shillings." The 
reply has been, " I thank yer worship, shure that fine will 
help me to mend tt.^* I have told another that I would 
suspend his licence for a month ; but this only elicited a 
request for an order to admit him and his family to the 
poorhouse during the suspension. If the complaints pre- 
ferred by the police did not effect much good, those 
brought forward by private individuals were, in their 
general tendency, and as a class of cases, decidedly in- 
jurious. When extortion, violence, insolence, or an in- 
i'raction of duty provoked an aggrieved person to summon, 
the usual course was for the delinquent to send his wife 
to the complainant's residence, or sometimes to borrow a 
wife, if he had not one of his own, to beg him off. In the 
case of a young lad being the offender, the intercession 
was managed by his mother, whether the maternity was 
real or pretended. The afflicted female beset the door, 
and applied to all who passed in or out " to save her and 
her childher, or her poor ^or^oon, from the waves of the 

Dublin Carmen, 87 

world." that Mr. Porter was a ** rale Turk," and if the 
poor fellow was brought before him, he would be 
destroyed *' out of a face/* A riddance of such impor- 
tunities formed no slight inducement to forego the prose- 
cution, and consequently the majority of sueh cases were 
dismissed for the non-appearance of the complainant ; but 
sometimes the fellow Avho had been " begged off " came 
forward, stated that he Avas ready to answer the summons, 
and insisted on his loss of time being recompensed by 
costs. I must admit that I always complied with such 
applications, and I have enjoyed frequently the vain 
remonstrances of the forgiving party, who, for his mis- 
taken and expensive lenity, acquired nothing but the 
wholesome warning not to summon a Dublin driver Avith- 
out appearing to prosecirte. 

Although the carmen were rather fond of getting more 
than their fare, they became the dupes and victims of 
dishonest and tricky employers, and, to use their own 
term, were " sconced " much more frequently than was 
generally supposed. The Four Courts constituted, in my 
time, the frequent scene of such rascality. There was 
seldom a day in Term that some poor carman was not 
left " without his costs " by a plausible fellow, who 
alighting at one door, and passing through the hall, 
went out at another, leaving the driver with the assur- 
ance, that '* he would be back in a minute," to find that 
lie had been employed, for perhaps an hour or two pre- 
viously by a heartless blackguard, Avho desired no better 
fun than '* sconcing" him. I believe that a regulation has 
been since adopted which authorises a driver engaged by 
time to require payment in advance. I consider it a very 
great improvement. 

88 Twenty Tears* Recollections. 




A YOUNG woman who was servant in a house in Harcourt 
Street in which two students resided, had an altercation 
with one of them, which eventuated in a summons and a 
cross-summons before me. It appeared that the youug 
man had imputed dishonesty to her, and she had' been 
very indignant and abusive towards her accuser. He 
called his fellow-student as a witness, to prove that the 
girl threw a bottle at him, and that she freely used the 
terms of swindler, blackguard, &c. The charge of dis- 
honesty was unfounded, and the encounter between the 
parties terminated without any personal injury to either, 
but the damsel cross-examined the witness in reference to 
a transaction, and elicited a mode of procuring a jaunt 
across the city, which I hope that I shall not lessen the 
readei-'s interest in my observations and reminiscences of 
the Dublin carmen by briefly detailing. The woman 
acquired the knowledge of it by having overheard a con- 
versation between the young men. 

They had been invited to an early evening party at 
Summer Hill. They were not inclined to w^alk such a 
distance, and neither of them found it convenient to pay 
for a vehicle. At last the one who subsequently com- 
plained of being termed a swindler and blackguard said 
that he would get a covered car without payment. 
Accordingly, having walked to the nearest " hazard," he 
desired his comrade to get into a car, and also seated 
himself, he then directed the driver to proceed " to 
Santry," <* Santry !'' explained the astonished jarvey ; 

" is it joking you are ? D 1 an inch Til go to Santry 

to-night. Get out of my car if you plaze, the baste is 
tired, and I wont go." '* My good fellow, was the answer, 
" I shall not get out, and you may as well get on at once." 
*< By ^orra, if you dont't get out, Ull pull you out " said 

A OratuUous Jaunt. 89 

the carnian. " If yon lay a finger on me," answered the 
occupant, " I will resist you as well as I can, and I shall 
prosecute you for an assault." It was a bad business. The 
carman changed his tactics. *' Why, yer honor," he 
mildly urged, " it is an unrasonable thing to az a man 
to go to such a place even in the day time, for there's 

nothin but murdher and robbery on that b y road, 

an* if I do go, we'll be all kilt, and you'll be robbed into 
the bargain ; shure you haven't right sinse to think of 
such a jaunt." '* My friend," said the fare, ** there may 
be something in what you say, but I shall call at a house 
on Summer Hill and get firearms for myself and my 
companion, and with two case of pistols I fear no robbers." 
The carman grumbled, but he had a sturdy customer, 
so he mounted his seat and drove on. When they came 
to Summer Hill he was desired to pull up, and the two 
sparks alighted, assuring him that they would imme- * 
diately procure the arms and resume their journey. As 
soon as they were inside the hall-door, the jarvey plied 
his whip, and rattled oW as fast as he could, congratulat- 
ing himself that he had escaped a drive to Santry, and 
leaving the two scamps to enjoy the joke of having got a 
gratuitous jaunt from Harcourt Street to Summer Hill. 

There was at the time of my appointment to the magis- 
tracy, a car proprietor in Dublin, whose name was Bittner. 
His father had been a sergeant in the King's German 
Legion, had been invalided, and died in Dublin about the 
year 1810, leaving one son, who was then sixteen years of 
age. He was tolerably educated, intelligent, cleanly, 
active, and well-looking. A gentleman who was in delicate 
health, engaged the lad as his personal attendant, and 
was soon after advised by his physicians to betake him- 
self t© the south of Europe, in the hope of checking the 
progress of pulmonary disease. Lisbon was the only 
available place to the invalid, and he proceeded there, 
along with his youthful servant. He lived in Portugal 
for nine or ten years, and was so well satisfied with the 
care and attention of Bittner that he left him a legacy of 
£250. The gentleman's body was dixecl^^ \i^ V\^ \{^\»<5k 

90 Twenty YeaT%^ Recollections. 

be interred in Dublin, whither it was conveyed by the; 
faithful domestic. Bittner did not squander his money, 
neither did he become inactive. He was fond of horses, 
and of equestrian exercise, and engaged in the service of 
the late Mr. Quin, of Bray ; then the proprietor of an 
extensive hotel and first-rate posting establishment. The 
romantic scenery of Wicklow Avas then, as it must ever 
be, highly appreciated, and Quints chaises conveyed many 
visitors to the varied and numerous scenes of picturesque 
beauty. On one occasion Bittner was directed to bring a 
chaise to the door, to take two foreign gentlemen through 
the Glen of the Downs, and on to Dunran. The travellers 
were quite unacquainted with the English language, and 
in the hotel, had recourse to signs and self-attendance as 
much as possible. They got into the chaise, having 
previously pointed out on a map to Mr. Quiri, the route 
they wished to take. On arriving at the gate of Dunran, 
they made signs to stop the vehicle, and alighted. They 
then began to bewail to each other, their ignorance of 
English, and their consequent inability to acquire infor- 
mation as to the scenery, residences, and other particulars 
usually interesting to tourists. They spoke Portuguese, 
and Bittner immediately accosted them in their own 
language, told them that he would procure a person to 
mind his horses, and that he would then take them up to 
the " View Rock," and conduct them to each of the many 
places worthy of their observation. They expressed the 
highest gratification, and availed themselves of his services. 
As they proceeded, he told them that Mr. Quin's was the 
greatest and best regulated establishment in the world. 
That there were postillions kept there who had been 
procured from every European nation. The French 
postillions had gone with a party of their countrymen to 
the " Seven Churches,'* and two Germans and one Italian 
had left, early in the morning, for the Vale of Ovoca. 
The Spaniard was gone to Luggelaw. " I," said he, '* am 
the Portuguese postillion, I am delighted to have you, and 
can take you to all the beautiful places in Wicklow, but I 
aw afraid that I shall soon have to leave this employment, 

A few Jlyperhohs, 91 

for we hardly ever have a Portuguese gentleman at the 
hotel, so my chances are very poor." The travellers, 
driven by Bittner for about a-week, went to all the 
delightful scenery of Wicklow, and when departing, gave 
him a couple of sovereigns. In about three months after, 
Mr. Quin received a parcel in which there were two nicely 
lx)und volumes, and a complimentary letter, sent from 
Lisbon by Don Pedro Cabrito. With some difficulty he 
pot the letter translated, and also a couple of pages which 
had been turned down to attract his attention. He was 
then made aware that the Portuguese traveller accorded 
the highest praise to the comfort and elegance of his 
establishment, and also to his anxiety to convenience his 
foreign visitors, by keeping postillions, w^ho, in the aggre- 
gate, were acquainted with all European languages. The 
book also made honorable mention of the " Portuguese 
postillion," Bittner. The latter, as I have already stated, 
became a car proprietor. His vehicles were cleanly and 
neat, his drivers well conducted, and a complaint against 
him was of very rare occurrence. On one occasion, after 
I had heard an explanation. from his driver, he asked my 
leave to say " a word or two,'' to which I rei)lied, '* With 
pleasure, Mr. Bittner, I shall hear you, provided you do 
not speak Portuguese." *' Oh 1 your worship,'* said he, 
*' i see you know that story. I suppose Mr. Quin told 
you." His supposition was correct. 


One of the clerks in the police-court of Liverpool got 
leave of absence in, as I best remember, 1 845. He came 
to Dublin with some other young Englishmen for a few 
days of recreation. Curiosity induced him to visit our 
police-courts, where our clerks received him with fraternal 
courtesy. He told Mr. Cox that he and three others took 
an outside car, for a suburban drive. It happened to be 
on Corpus Christi day, and they were going along Rath- 
mines road, just as the religious procession incident to the 
festival was moving round the exlensWe covitX. ovjAsv^^^ <2Jl 

92 Twenty Years' Recollections. 

the Roman Cktholic chapel there. They directed the 
driver to stop, and then stood up on the seats to obtain a 
full view. Almost immediately one of them exclaimed, 
** Well, that beats the devil ! " The carman touched his 
hat to the exclaimer and replied, " Yes, your honor, that's 
what it's for." I have heard the late Judge Halliburton 
(Sara Slick the clock-maker) say, that he asked a carman 
what was the reason for building the Martello towers ? 
and that the interrogated party told him, '* he supposed it 
was, like the round towers, to puzzle posterity.^* 

The Spaniard, who described the rain as so heavy, that 
" it wetted him to the marrow," was not so poetical or 
forcible in his hyperbole as some of our jarveys have been. 
I recollect reading in a little work, published many years 
ago, and entitled '' Sketches of Ireland," that when a gen- 
tleman complained of the choking dust of the Rock road, 
and declared that he did not think it possible for a road to 
be so dusty, his driver remarked, " It 's thrue for yer 
honor ! but this road bates all others for dust, for, hy all 
accounts, there was dust on this road the day after Noah*s 
flood,** A lady who resided at Chapelizod was wont to 
give a carman whom she frequently employed a glass of 
grog, along with his fare, at the conclusion of each engage- 
ment. However, she became too sparing of the spirits, or 
too generous of the water, but the grog eventually became 
so weak, that its recipient criticised it, of course with an 
oath, by asserting, that " if you threw half-a-pint of 
whisky over Essex Bridge, you might take up as strong 
grog as that at the Lighthouse." 


According to my recollections of the summons cases of 
a police-court, apart from carriage complaints, I feel justi- 
fied in remarking on the mild and forgiving tendencies of 
the men, and the vindictive rancour of the women of 
Dublin. From recent conversations with police function- 
sries, I am disposed to believe that the present time differs 

Miscellaneous Summonses. 93 

in no material respect from the past. The man claims 
the protection of the law ; " he has no desire to injure the 
parties he complains of, but he wants them bound to the 
peace, just to keep them quiet.'' The woman wants '' the 
coorse of the law, and to have her adversary chastised 
and kept from killing the whole world, like a murdhering 
vagabone as she is ; it 's no use in talkin', but the street 
will never be quiet until she gets some little confinement 
just to lam her manners." Summonses for abusive lan- 
guage, or as the fair complainants term it, ^' street scandal/' 
are, perhaps, the most numerous cases as a class ; and on 
the hearing of them, there is frequently elicited an amount 
of vituperation beyond anything that Billingsgate could 
attempt to supply. In almost every case a total absence 
of chastity is imputed as a matter of course ; and if a 
foreigner would only believe both sides of a police sum- 
mons-book, he would be forced to the conclusion that 
chastity was a virtue rarely found amongst the lower order 
of Dublin females. Yet the very contrary is the fact : 
furious in their resentments, uncontrollable in their invec- 
tives, and inveterately addicted to assassination of charac- 
ter, they are, in general, extremely chaste ; and attest the 
value they attach to female virtue by invariably imputing 
its absence to their opponents. Sometimes, indeed, a 
novel term of reproach arouses volcanic fury, and an 
eruption of indignation is excited by the most extraor- 
dinary and unmeaning epithet. I cannot forget a fish- 
vendor from Patrick Street vociferating to me, that if her 
enemy was not sent off to Grangegorman at wanst, her life 
and her child's life (for she was enceinte) would be lost. 
" But what did she say ? " was my query. " What did she 
say 1 yer worship, what did she say ! Why she came down 
forenenst the whole world at the comer of Plunket Street, 

and called me 'a b y ould excommunicated gasometer.' " 

I may mention that as female invective generally ascribed 
inconsistency to its opponent, so the male scolds — happily 
not very numerous — had their favorite term of reproach ; 
and when they wished to destroy a man's reputation, they 
designated him — a thief? — no; a robber "i — ^iio\ ''d* ^sixxi- 

94 Twenty Tears* Recollections, 

derer ? — no ; they satiated aU their malignity in calling 
him " an informer/' 

Disputes between manufacturers and their artisans or 
workmen were very rarely the subject of magisterial inves- 
tigation. There was, however, one case disposed of by 
me in which a comparison was instituted of a most extra- 
ordinary nature. A journeyman summoned an employer 
for abruptly dismissing him, without giving him, according 
to the usage of the trade, ''a week's notice or a week's 
wages." I shall not mention the name, residence, or trade 
of the defendant ; but I must say that his countenance 
exhibited the greatest obliquity of vision that I ever 
observed in a human face. All the trite phrases com- 
monly applied to squints would fail adequately to describe 
the tendency of his eyes to avoid seeing the same object at 
the same time. He admitted having summarily discharged 
the workman, and alleged that the complainant had totally 
spoiled an article which he had been directed to make in a 
hexagon form, and conformable to a pattern supplied, and 
had produced a piece of work in which shape and pro- 
portion had been totally disregarded. The complainant 
insisted that the work had been properly done, and in 
complete conformity with the model, and he asked why 
it was not produced, so that I might judge, by viewing it, 
whether it deserved to he condemned as crooked and 
shapeless. I suggested a postponement of the case, and 
the production of the condemned article. The defendant, 
who was rather excited, replied, '*Your worsnip, I was 
so vexed when it was brought in, that I threw it out of 
the window of the finishing room into the yard, and it 
was smashed to pieces, but I am ready to swear, in this 
or any other court, that it was cis crooked as the two eyes in 
my head,** The laugh in which I indulged, at hearing 
this comparison, was lost in the risibility of all present. 
I suggested that the parties might come to an understand- 
itig, and that the complainant might be afforded another 
opportunity of making an article perfectly conformable 
to the pattern, and without any resemblance to anything 
e^. This was agreed to, and they depatved xvi^iviwoivVvid. 

Dogs, 95 



The statute, passed since my retirement, to enforce and 
regulate the registration of dogs, has relieved the magis- 
trates from having to dispose, in the course of each year, 
of some hundreds of summonses against the owners, or 
reputed owners of dogs which were found *' roaming at 
large on the public thoroughfare, without log or muzzle." 
In my time, I never found a summons in reference to a 
dog, at the instance of a constable, entered indiscriminately 
with other complaints. If the first case was a canine one, 
I might feel assured that it would be followed by forty or 
fifty others of the same description, and that the dogs 
would monopolise the day. It appeared to me that the 
police were occasionally directed to give special attention, 
for two or three days, to the unlogged and unmuzzled 
curs, and thus produce what our clerks used to term " a 
dog board." The appearance of a male defendant was 
extremely rare. The persons complained of were gener- 
ally working tradesmen or labourers, who, on receiving a 
summons, directed the wife to attend the court, as they 
could not afford to lose their time. When a defendant 
was called, his female substitute, eager to have the first 
word, answered to the man's name ; but what she said 
referred to the animal. A mere listener might imagine 
that the defendants were either guilty of some atrocious 
offences, or were subjected, unheard and untried, to a 
. fearful, fatal doom ; for instance — 

'* Call James Foley." 

"He's drounded, yer worship, we drounded him off 
Wood Quay, the very evening that we got the summons, 
he was'nt logged or muzzled, but he is dead now, and the 
policeman *ill never see him again." 

*• You are Himd two and sixpence.*' 

96 Twenty Tears* MecolUctions, 

" Oh ! yer worship, that's very hard, and he dead." 

" Call Peter Casey." 

'•He's hung, sir; he was very owld and stupid, and 
hadn't a tooth in his head, so we hung him, not to be 
bother'd with him any more," &c. 

" Call Patrick Dempsey." 

''Plaze yer worship, he's dead, and if the polisman 
knew him, he'll know that he's dead. We had him hung 
and got him skinned, and I have his skin here to show 

Perhaps another case would disclose the appalling fact, 
that Denis Reilly was "pisened by a young doctor that 
we got to sponge his nose with some Prooshun stuff, and 
it kilt him." Such calamities have been averted from the 
Foleys, Caseys, Dempseys, and Reillys of the present 
time, and the magistrates have been relieved from having 
to listen to such murderous details from the lips of the 
gentler sex by the magical effect of canine registration. 


In a few years after my appointment, a statute passed 
authorising the infliction of corporal punishment on boys 
convicted of thieving. The Act empowered us to order 
the offender to be flogged, if we were of opinion that his 
age did not exceed fourteen years. There was a lad named 
Lowry, who was an inveterate thief, and who received five 
or six castigations by my directions. The instrument em- 
ployed was a birch tod, with which a constable gave the 
delinquent six heavy lashes. As soon as Lowry appeared 
before me, he seemed to disregard the details ol* the charge 
preferred. There were no protestations of innocence, no 
admissions of guilt ; but the moment he entered, he com- 
menced the loud and continued assertion, "I'm beyant 
fourteen, Vm beyant fourteen." On each occasion I dil- 
fered from the opinion so forcibly enunciated, and ordered 
the application of the birchen correction. Finally, he 
withdrew from my quarter, and restricted his delinqueu- 
cj'es to the B and C divisions. 1 \<as vaSottciftd tUat he 

Whipping Young Thieves, 97 

expressed his disgust at my decisions by saying—" If I 
was to live until I got as grey as the owld rascal himself, 
he'd still insist that I was not bey ant fourteen." 

One day there were a number of packages lying in a 
heap on the floor of a shop in Parliament Street, and 
rather near the entrance. A label upon each stated the 
contents to be three pounds of tea, of the finest quality, 
oflPered by the proprietor of " The Golden Teapot" to his 
respected customers, at the unprecedented low price of 
seven shillings. The parcels were covered with bright tin- 
foil, and had on each end a large seal in red wax. A 
detective passing at the opposite side of the street observed 
a boy stoop forward, just inside the door, and possess 
himself of one of the packages of " splendid tea." The 
young thief was seized at once, and brought before me, in 
about five minutes after he had stolen the article. I 
ordered him to be taken down stairs, to have six lashes 
administered, and to be discharged. I then directed the 
office messenger to run over to the establishment^ and 
tell them to send some person to claim the property. On 
his return he said that the people were making fun of him, 
and laughing at the result of the young thief's attempt. I 
then raised one of the seals slightly with an cflice knife, 
and found that the parcel was a dummy ^ made up for 
show, and that the contents were sawdust. I told the 
messenger, when I had closed the seal with another touch 
of wax, to take it down and give it to the delinquent on 
his departure, as the owners had not claimed the property. 
The whipping was just over, and the sufferer issued forth, 
having under his arm the cause of his punishment, and 
for which it was to become his consolation. I was stand- 
ing at the window, and just as he passed the external 
rails, he stopped suddenly, and proceeded to examine the 
package. Instantly he tore the cover, and flung up the 
contents. The pain of the flogging seemed to return with 
augmented force, and he screamed forth the most vitupera- 
tive comments on -toy decision. " It wasn't tay at all. I 
was beat for sawdust, and there's no law for that. I'll 
get a letter wrote to the Lord LeCteiiriati\»,^ci\xc>\^\^^"a.v:si^. 

98 Twenty Yeari EecoUections, 

and he'll lam you the differ between sawdust and tay." 
Inspector O'Connor told me that the case was very fully 
discussed amongst the young thieves, and that the general 
conclusion was, " not to be too ready to steal parcels out 
of shops, without knowing what was inside of them." 


My immediate predecessors generally resided in Dublin, 
and they were considered by the proprietors of orchards 
and gardens in the rural portion of the district, as too 
lenient to depredators of fruit and vegetables. At the 
time of my appointment, there was no safety for such 
crops unless they were closely watched, and during the 
night, the discharge of firearms, to deter marauders, was 
almost continuous in Dolphin's Barn, Kilmainham, Har- 
old's Cross, and Crumlin. Any cessation of strict vigi- 
lance was certain to produce consequences which might 
be fairly termed calamitous to those whose fruits and 
vegetables were depended on for the maintenance of their 
families. There were many persons who followed garden 
robbing as their avocation, and the injuries inflicted by 
them frequently extended to the succeeding year. If 
they feared interruption, they would tear or cut the 
branches of the larger fruits, and entire gooseberry and 
currant bushes would be abstracted, to be picked at leisure. 
Small fines or short imprisonments had totally failed to 
check such offences. At the time to which I refer, I re- 
sided at Roundtown, and although I had gardens and a 
fine vinery there, they were never spoliated, so that in 
adopting towards fruit-stealers stronger measures than 
they had previously experienced, I was not actuated by 
any personal feeling. However, I had the birch very 
liberally used amongst the boys, and the more mature 
offenders were, when convicted by me, deprived of any 
opportunity for continuing their depredations on the grow- 
ing or ripening productions of the season. Personal 
motives were, nevertheless, sometimes ascribed to mc, 
even hy tbone who were highly pleased with my decisions. 

Eeformatories, 99 

A very extensive orchard and garden at Harold's Cross 
were entered by three liabitual thieves, and they were 
captured whilst hastily filling two sacks with the choicest 
apples, pears, apricots, &c. They had taken the sacks 
from premises adjoining, and I convicted them of two 
distinct offences. Each was sent for four months to Eal- 
mainham, with hard labour. Mr. Cox was engaged in 
drawing the informations and committals, when the pro- 
prietor exclaimed, in a tone of the highest gratification, 
"Oh! Mr. Cox, is it not a blessing from God that we 
have now got a magistrate who has a garden of his own f" 
Two musicians belonging to a regimental band were 
observed one night to cross a wall at Inchicore, into a 
garden abounding with every description of choice fruit. 
The police were quietly apprised of the offence, and the 
delinquents were apprehended coming out of the premises 
precisely at the place where they had entered. They 
were both Germans. Their pockets were crammed, and 
each had a handkerchief containing as much as could be 
bundled in it. They had not taken a peach, apricot, or 
plum ; even the pears and apples were disregarded ; and 
the produce of their daring raid consisted entirely of onions, 
I committed them for a week, and they were dismissed 
from the service by the regimental authorities. 


Previous to my retirement from magisterial duty, the 
offence of fruit-stealing had greatly diminished, and I 
believe that it does not now attain one-tenth of its former 
frequency. When the magistrates were empowered to 
send juvenile thieves to reformatories, corporal punish- 
ment ceased to be administered. I preferred having a boy 
flogged and discharged to sending him to prison, to be 
kept, at the public expense, in baneful associations. As 
soon, however, as a reformatory became available, I trans- 
mitted the juvenile offenders, after a few days' imprison- 
ment, to the care and instruction which, in all those insti- 
tutions^ hare produced most beneficial ies\i\.\.^. ^-^ ^^^N» 

100 Twenti/ Years' Recollections, 

consignment to Glencree Reformatory was made under 
circumstances rather extraordinary. 

I was invited by my kind and valued friend, the late 
Mr. George Evans, of Portrane, to spend a week at his 
hospitable mansion. Arrangements were made by me with 
my colleagues to admit of my absence for that time, and 
that I should take the duty on the Monday of the suc- 
ceeding week. Accordingly, I came to Dublin from 
Donabate by an early train, and commenced the custody 
cases about ten o'clock, a.m. A constable prosecuted a 
lad whom he had met on Rathmines Road about four 
o'clock on that morning, carrying a coarse bath-sheet, in 
which two check shirts, three pairs of cotton socks, and a 
washing waistcoat were wrapped. The prisoner was 
charged with having those articles in his possession, they 
being " reasonably suspected of having been stolen or un- 
lawfully obtained.'' I called on the prisoner to account to 
my satisfaction how he came by them. He declined any 
explanation, and produced a laugh in court by saying 
*' that I would know lime enough." I ordered him to be 
imprisoned for a week, and then to be transmitted to 
Glencree for three years. On my return home to Round- 
town in the evening, I was told that my bath-sheet, night- 
shirts, &c., had been stolen on the previous night from a 
bleaching-line in the back yard, over the wall of which 
my first envoy to Glencree had managed to clamber. The 
articles did jiot remain long in the police store. 


Soon after my appointment to office, an election oc- 
curred, and the city of Dublin was keenly contested. I 
received an order to proceed, on the nomination day, to 
Green Street, to take charge of the civil force there, and to 
report myself to the returning officer, the High Sheriff^. I 
had consequently, in my official capacity, to present my- 
self to my own brother, the late Joshua Porter, and I con- 
tjnued during the election, which was protracted as long 
AS' the law allowed, ready to qvieW aiv^ T\o\.o\i^ d^moustra- 

Apologies for Violence. 101 

tion. My brother was not fortunate enough to please all 
parties^ His arrangement of booths and selection of de- 
puties wete denounced as having been made in a partial 
spirit, and the mob vociferously expressed an anxiety to 
be actuated in their treatment of him by the greatest of 
Christian virtues, for they unanimously agreed that it 
would be a " charity " to pelt him, if any opportunity 
offered to make a liberal subscription of stones for the 
purpose* lie was escorted each day to and from the 
court-house by a strong body of police, and he remained 
in it until the termination of the proceedings in the even- 
ings. There was usually, during the election, a troop of 
hussars stationed in Halston Street, at the rere of New- 
gate, and a party of police was distributed between them 
and King Street, North. One afternoon, just at twilight, 
I walked out of the court-house, and as soon as I got to 
the steps, a crowd in King Street uttered a yell of ani- 
mosity) and sent a volley of stones at me. I was not 
struck by any of the missiles. The police moved towards 
the mob, and the latter receded a few yards, but remained 
together. I walked towards them, and loudly informed 
them, that if they renewed their attack, I had the " Riot 
Act " in my pocket, and would instantly read it, and reply 
by a discharge of carbine bullets. There was no further 
demonstration on their part, and I returned to the court- 
house. In a few minutes, I was departing for home, 
when I was accosted by a carman named Smith. He 
asked me, " Would I take a covered car ?" and 1 replied 
in the affirmative. He brought me home ; and on dis- 
charging him, he said that the people had directed him to 
try ** if he could get to say two or three words to me." 
He then conveyed to me the most extraordinary apology 
that could emanate from a mob for an attempted outrage. 
" Yer worship, I was tould to tell you that there wasn't 
a man or boy among them would throw anything at you 
or any other of yer magistrates, but whin you came out 
on the steps, in the dusk of the evening, they really 
thought that you were The High Sheriff " 
J may mention that being in London m \^4l^, oivi 

102 Twenty Years' Recollections. 

official business, I was invited to dine at the Mansion 
House at an entertainment given by the Lord Mayor of 
that year (Sir James Duke) to the judicial authorities, 
metropolitan magistrates, &c. I had the honour to sit 
beside Chief Baron Pollok, and in conversation with him 
and two or three others in my proximity, I narrated the 
preceding anecdote. He said that the apology tendered 
to me was not more ridiculous or absurd than one which 
had been offered by some of those engaged in the " No 
Popery" riots of 1780, connected with the name of Lord 
George Gordon. There was a house in Charles Street, 
from the precincts of which morality was totally estranged, 
and it was thoroughly devastated by a furious mob. 
Some of those concerned in wrecking it were subsequently 
arrested, tried and convicted of the offence. When brought 
forward for sentence, the judge gave them to understand 
that the reputation of the premises afforded no justifica- 
tion for their violence, nor could it be alleged in mitiga- 
tion of their punishment. Two or three of them exclaimed, 
** that if they bad known what the house really was, they 
would never have attacked it ; but they had been told, 
and fully believed, that it was a Nunnery,^* 


In twelve or eighteen months after the festive occasion 
to which I have referred, I accompanied a friend to visit 
two of his daughters, who were pupils at the Loretto 
Convent, Rathfarnham. Mrs. Ball, the aged and re- 
spected Superioress, gave us a very kind reception. We 
were conducted through the gardens and conservatories. 
On returning to the house, we were plentifully served 
with refreshments. In the course of conversation, my 
friend expressed his regret that so much hostile feeling 
should exist against oonventu£^l institutions. I remarked 
that it was not at all so intense as it had been in the 
previous century, when in London the mere reputation of 
a house being a nunnery was considered by the populace 
»s fully sufScient to justify its de»tr\x(il\oii* 'lo V\v^ \i^\ 

Terry DiHscoWa Fiction. 103 

of my recollection, the Superioress observed — " I hope 
that those who entertained such hostile feelings lived long 
enough to repent of them. I think that the various 
classes of society are coming to a better understanding, 
and I expect great progressive improvement. Here we 
have not suffered the slightest annoyance for more than 
thirty years, and the only matter of which we had to 
complain was not very serious. Shortly after this estab- 
lishment was founded, two young fellows, who resided 
in the neighbourhood, formed a design to entice two very 
handsome and rich young ladies to elope with them. 
They provided ladders, climbed into the trees which over- 
hung the waU, dropped notes at the feet of the lasses, 
and were for a time incessant in their amatory pursuit. 
However, a communication with the guardian of one and 
the parents of the other, and the consequent authorita- 
tave expostulations, produced a satisfactory effect. They 
promised to relinquish their project, and as a token of 
their sincerity, sent us their ladders. I believe they re- 
pented of having given us any trouble, and they implicitly 
kept their promise. One of them is now a colonel in the 
army, and the other is a magistrate of police, Mr. Porter, 
let me request you to have moie fruit and another glass 
of wine." I admired the kind and forgiving sentiments 
of the Superioress, and felt very grateful for her courteous 
hospitality, but I had no idle curiosity to know the names 
oi the two ladder lads to whom her observaktions referred. 




I gHAjx now revert to magisterial reminiscences, and 
notice an anecdote originally published in the Warder 
newspaper, as a portion of a letter signed ** Terry Dris- 
co)!,** which was the nam de jplume o^ 2» >ii«^^».Xia^\v 

lO-i Twenty Tears* Recollections. 

facetious and imaginative contributor named Jackson. It 
purports to be a report of observations addressed by 
me to a female who was repeatedly charged with being 
** drunk and disorderly." It states that Mr, Porter said 
to the delinquent that her frequent intoxication was 
always accompanied with indecent language and personal 
violence, so as to render her a public nuisance and a 
})lague to the police. He then adjudged her, in default 
of solvent security for her good behaviour, to be committed 
for one calendar month, which time should be sufficient 
to bring her to a proper state of reflection on the past, 
and a disposition to reform her habits, and to curse 
Whiskey. To this she is represented to have replied, 
*' That she had no fault to find with Whiskey, nor would 
she ever curse it, but from the bottom of her heart she 
could wish had luck to Porter J* To this anecdote several 
English periodicals have aflforded extensive publicity, 
and I have merely to say that it is altogether a fic- 


There is, I believe, still living in Dublin, a woman 
named Bridget LafFan. I would readily wager that since 
1841 she has been the subject of more than two thousand 
committals, in which drunkenness, violence, abusive lan- 
guage, indecent expressions or behaviour, and occasional 
mendicancy, constituted the offences. Shortly before I 
retired, she was brought before me charged with intoxica- 
tion, and with three distinct assaults ; one being on a 
constable in the execution of his duty. I told her, the 
cases having been fully proved, that on each of the 
assaults she should go to prison, with hard labor, for two 
months, which would relieve the public and the police 
for the next half year from one who had become an into- 
lerable pest and disgrace to the community. When I 
directed her to be removed, she exclaimed that " she had 
not been allowed to say a word for herself." I then said 
that she was at liberty to speak, if it occurred to her that 

Sailors. 105 

there was any favorable circumstances in her case either 
as a defence or mitigation. Her reply was short and 
peculiarly argumentative. 

** It 's an tinrasonable thing to sind me to Grangegor- 
raan for six months, and to call me a pest and disgrace to 
the 'varsal world. If it wasn't for me and the likes of me, 
that gets a bit disorderly whin we have a drop, and kicks 
up ructions now and then, there ud be very little call for 
polls magistrates and polismen, or such varmint. It*s 
creatures like me that 's yer best friends, and keeps the 
bread in yer mouths, and all we get for it is jailing and 


During the considerable time in which I discharged 
magisterial duties at the Head Office and also at Kings- 
town, 1 cannot recollect that more than five or six charges 
were preferred before me against sailors* When the AjaX 
was stationed at the latter place one of the crew stole 
some clothes and other articles from several of his ship- 
mates. The thief was detected on shore with some of the 
property in his possession, and was summarily convicted 
before me, and imprisoned, with hard labor, for six months. 
I notice this case on account of the discontent which, I 
was credibly informed, the treatment of the delinquent 
produced amongst the crew. It is generally believed that 
the abolition of corporal punishment was anxiously de- 
sired by our sailors ; but in reference to the instance of 
thieving which was disposed of by me, it was regarded on 
board the ship as almost tantamount to the forgiveness of 
the delinquent. The opinion was most freely expressed 
that the fellow should have been sent on board, tried by 
court-martial, andjtogged. It was the only offence of a mean 
and disgraceful nature that I ever knew to be charged 
against a blue-jacket. 

About twenty years have elapsed since " La Hogue " 
frigate came into Kingstown. One of the crew, as fine- 
looking a young man as ever I saw, came oiv slvot^ eAN.<l 

106 Twenty Year/ RewlUaums. 

indulged too freely in strong potations. It required two 
or three constBbles to effect his capture and lodgment in 
the Blulion-housc. Next moniingha was brought up be- 
fore me, and the circ urns Canoes of h'u intoxication and 
rtiitlitaDce were in course of statement by one of his 
capton, who occupied the ivitness box, whilst the prisoner 
■tuod directly opposite to the bench, with the ship's 
oorporftl, who had been sent ashore to look after him, 
■tniiditig; cloau buside him. I said to the sailor, "If you 
wiiih to p\it any question to the oontitable, you are at 
Itborty to do bo, and if you feel disposed to say anything 
for yoUTielf, I am ready and willing to hear you." He 
stood lileiit niid downcast, when the ship's corporal 
nudged him and said quite aloud, " Speak up for yourself 
liko a uiiui, the magistrate is a good gentleman, and is 
ready to hear you." The prisoner replied in a desponding, 
hut parfectly audible tone, " It 's no use, that fellow 

aioiutiiig til the polioemnn) will swear anything, and the 
d ohap will believe him." There was ioud and general 
'lAUgliter at tho estimate formed by the tar of the oonsta- 
blu and of the magistrate. I discharged him, without 
prcjiidiou to informations and a warrant, and told the 
•liip'a uorporal tlntt the warrant should not be sent on 
boiurd, 1 cunsequenily restricted the sailor to remain in 
hia reswl during her stay at Kingstown, which was for 
nbout anoth«r viwk. 

From ihu same ship a sailor came ashore attired in his 

\teti dotbes, and with seven pounds in his pocket, Mn 

iras decoyed into a disreputable plaoe, where, by the 

•^ninistnOioo nf whiskey and snuff, he was rendered 

iuvenMUu. A .ieteclive observed a woman leaving the 

housr, and carrying a bundle. He allowed her to proceed 

^ to the railwity terminus, at the entrance of which he 

, artcsicd lior, I'm bunille contained ihe seaman's clothes, 

.1 .: . ^Munber got a fire ponnd note and iwo 

«d in the culprit's ddgnaii. The police 

« MUlor of lb« clothes and money having 

' ' ~ 1 in some old ill-£icinj 

» labberij in Ws aOsn, 

Fisher, 107 

and also deeply dejected at the supposed loss of his 
clothes and cash. His sadness was at once dissipated by 
the contents of the bundle being produced, and the bank- 
note and sovereigns completed the restoration of his 
spirits. There was, however, one small article missing, and 
in reference to it he made an earnest request of me, and 
accompanied it with an alluring offer, iu the following 
terms : — 

'* Your honor, my clothes are all here and my money 
is safe too. I only miss a little blue hankercher with white 
spots, I had it from mother when we last parted ; and it's 
dog's usage I'll get from her if I haven't it at our next 
meeting. If you send out a smart chap or two in search 

of it, I think it will be easily got, and if it is, I'm d d 

but I'll stand anything that you and your people choose 
to call for, all round." 

A summary conviction, with six months' imprisonment, 
of the woman with whom the clothes and money were 
detected, terminated the proceeding. The kerchief was 
not sought for, and we had " all round " to content our- 
selves without the proffered libations, 


One of the most extraordinary characters of the many 
who came under my frequent magisterial notice, was a man 
named Fisher. He was the most inveterate and incor- 
rigible drunkard that was to be found in Dublin, perhaps 
I might truly say, in the Empire. He had been educated, 
as I heard, in Stockholm, and acquired a proficiency in 
several European languages. He had also considerable 
classical attainments. His intemperance had ruined his 
commercial interests, and precluded his employment by 
others, even in very subordinate capacities. Occasionally 
he would be taken and kept almost as a prisoner in the 
concerns of an extensive timber merchant, arranging with 
the Norwegian or Danish people engaged in the delivery 
of cargoes. A suit of clothes and a pound or two would 
be tbiM acquired, but io a few muvMl^* a^\.<ax^i\'&\^^x^^^ssQL 

108 Twenty Years Recollections. 

he would assuredly be found in street or lane, hall or 
entry, dead drunk. He was never violent, abusive^ 
blasphemous, or indecent, and as his senses returned, he 
became courteous and submissive. By the police he was 
generally pitied, and when a constable was obliged to state 
that he found " Mr. Fisher" drunk on a thoroughfare, he 
almost invariably added that he was very quiet. The 
magistrates were not severe on the wretched creature^ 
and in general, the ruling in reference to him was deferred 
until the close of their sitting (four o'clock), and then 
the charge sheet was marked, " Dismissed with a caution." 
If there happened to be a paucity of cases, we were not 
disinclined to allow Fisher to address the bench, and state 
the grounds on which he expected or solicited exemption 
from punishment. He never "worshipped" us, but in- 
variably named the magistrate, with the prefix of " My 
dear." I recollect a short speech having been made by 
him before myself, which excited my surprise and admi- 
ration from its purity of diction and the combination of 
interesting ideas it evinced. The charge against him was 
" l)runk on a public thoroughfare," and the constable 
stated that he found Mr. Fisher lying on the steps of a 
hall-door in Peter Street, fast asleep, and having been 
aroused, he was very drunk, but perfectly quiet. 

" My dear Mr. Porter," said the prisoner, ** I acknow- 
ledge and regret my lapse from propriety—^ 

* Facilis descensus Averni.' 

I have, however, been severely punished. I reclined on 
the steps where your constable found me, and immediately 
1 sank into a slumber which, had it lasted for ever, would 
have afforded me a blissful immortality. Sweet visions of 
the past, retrospections of youthful joys, untainted by 
the errors and cares of the present, monopolised my 
imagination. A mother's lips were pressed to mine, 
A father's smile gladdened my heart. I had clasped a 
sister's hand, and a brother's arm encircled my neck. 
The home of my childhood arose before me, and the gar- 
den, with which my earliest recollections were associated. 

Fisher, 109 

appeared in luxuriant, vernal beauty. The strong hand of 
your oflBcer, firmly but not rudely applied, dispelled the 
delightful scene in which I was entranced, and recalled me 
to the sad reality of captivity and degradation. Have I 
not already suffered enough to justify the clemency which 
I implore ? " The wretched man was cautioned and dis- 

Having been brought before me on four successive 
mornings, I told him that I would not permit his coming 
80 frequently, and that I adjudged him to pay a shilling, 
or to be confined for twenty-four hours. Thereupon he 
replied, *' I regret, my dear Mi. Porter, that on this occa- 
sion you do not manifest your usual equanimity. 1 ac- 
knowledge my fault, but 1 am not worse to-day than I 
was yesterday or any of the previous days, Moreover, I 
must respectfully submit that you are greatly mistaken in 
your remarks as to my coming so often. I never came 
before you or any magistrate. I was always brought. If 
the police will leave me as they find me, I shall never 
complain of their want of attention, nor shall I ever in- 
trude on your presence. Strike off that paltry shilling, 
and let me depart once more." 1 told the constable to 
remove the prisoner, upon which he exclaimed, *' If you 
are obdurate, and insist on marking a penalty, put five 
shillings on the sheet. It will look more respectable, and 
there is just the same chance of its payment." 

Fisher continued a hopeless, persistent drunkard. With 
natural talents of no mean order, and with educational 
acquirements from which great and varied advantages 
might be expected, he lived despised and ridiculed, and 
afforded to those under whose occasional observation he 
came, a melancholy but certain proof that when a man's 
habits render him his own enemy, he becomes incapable 
of deriving any benefit from the friendship of others. On 
a winter's night in, I believe, 1856, Fisher betook himself 
to a limekiln in Luke Street^ He lay down too near the 
edge and fell asleep, never to awalvc again in this world. 
Suffocated by the fumes of the kiln, his corpse, after an 
inquest and verdict of " accidental d»iaX\v" \?^^ ^Qt»i\'^^^ 

110 Tioenty Tear 8^ Recollections, 

to a pauper's coflSn, and was ultimately made a subject for 
anatomical demonstration. His fate was truly melancholy, 
but some salutary reflections may be derived from contem- 
plating the final consequences of habitual and unrestrained 



I SHALL now proceed to relate a magisterial reminiscence 
in which the only fictions are the names of the parties, 
and I trust that at the termination of the narrative, my 
readers will agree in the moral which I shall attempt to 
deduce, that the person who commences a cheating game 
is not to be pitied, if, at the close, he finds himself the 
only loser. 

Twenty-five years have elapsed since, in an aristocratic 
family, in a central county of Ireland, a young woman 
was residing in a capacity rather difficult to define. She 
was somewhat above a menial and below a governess, 
neither the companion of her employers nor the associate 
of the servants. Her educational attainments were very 
limited, and her industrial power was of little value, for 
she was of small frame and delicate constitution. The 
care of two children was deputed to her, and all services 
necessary for their health, comfort, instruction, correction, 
or amusement were expected from Elizabeth Jones. 

She had enough to do, but she did not think so. Her 
life was monotonous, her tastes were not congenial to the 
circumstances and persons amongst whom she was placed. 
A native of Wales, far from her kindred, and prevented by 
her position from forming, amongst her own sex, a friend- 
ship, or even an acquaintance to which she could attach 
any value, her only resource was to fall in love, — and a 
few casual attentions from an officer of constabnlary quite 
overcame poor Elizabeth Jones. 

" He dazzled her eyes, he bewildered her brain, 
He caught her affections so light an^ so Ns^ur 

A Duper Duped, 111 

He perceived that he was loved, and pretended a recip- 
rocal feeling. He promised, and vowed, and swore that 
she should be his wife, and he deceived her. 

Kichard Gilmore was sorely annoyed when Elizabeth 
Jones suggested very strong reasons for the immediate 
observance of his solemn promise of marriage ; but he 
refused compliance, and sought to convince her that their 
union would only ruin him without saving her. She 
addressed her remonstrances to deaf ears. Marriage was 
out of the question, and she found herself a ruined, friend- 
less creature, with the certainty of a speedy and disgraceful 
expulsion from the house in which she had for some years 
humbly earned her subsistence. However she vented no 
reproaches ; she only upbraided with a tear, and communi- 
cated her determination to depart and carry her sorrows to 
some distant locality. Of this intention Richard fully 
approved ; and he congratulated himself on the prospect 
of being so soon delivered from any future annoyance on 
the part of Elizabeth Jones. She fixed the time for leaving 
her situation, and requested a last interview with Mr. 
Gilmore, at an early hour, before the inmates of the house 
were stirring. Kichard ^as punctual. She opened a 
writing-desk, and informed him that she had come to the 
resolution of releasing him from every promise on his 
part, from every claim which she could advance then or at 
any future time, on one condition ; she only required his 
written pledge, upon his honor as an officer and a gentle- 
man, that he would never seek to renew his acquaintance 
■with her, or even pretend to know her if they met. To 
this he joyfully acceded, and placed the required docu- 
ment in her hands ; but his curiosity induced him to 
enquire as to her motive in seeking such a solemn written 

** Richard Gilmore," she said, **I was prostrated by 
acute and increasing misery, but a door of escape from 
total disgrace and destruction has been opened. I can 
never be happy, but I may have some opportunity for 
reflection, and ultimately, my mind may become some- 
what tranguih I shall aoon be a motliei. 1 ^m ^\^^\i\. 

112 Twcnly Years* ReccUections, 

depart from Ireland for ever, and shall fix my residence in 
a retired part of England, and there, in the garb and 
under the designation of a widow, I shall devote myself to 
the care of the child of whom you are father, but for 
whom, I only insist and have stipulated with you, that 
you shall never disgrace your offspring by disclosing its 
paternity, and never remind me by your presence of the 
degradation to which, by your falsehood, I have been 

** But," said Gilmore, ** your means are scanty, and for 
a time you must be incapable of any industrial pursuit or 
exertion. I can give you some pecuniary assistance ; it 
is my duty to do all J can to alleviate your sufferings. I 
deserve your reproaches, and would gladly do anything to 
prove that I am not so utterly heartless as you think me." 

" No, Kichard Gilmore ; not a farthing would I receive 
from you, if it were to save nie from starvation. To you 
I owe my ruin, but with you I have no further communi- 
cation ; and I shall never allow you to think that I have 
compromised my wrongs for money, or taken a price for 
my character. Moreover, I may now tell you that J shall 
not want your assistance ; and as I feel that you dare not 
break your written undertaking, you may read this." 

She placed ii^ his hands a letter, of which the following 
is a copy, substituting fictitious names : — 

'* Abergavenny, Jane 14th, 1847. 

" Miss Elizabeth Jones, 

*' Madame, I hasten to apprize you of the death of your 
lamented aunt, -Miss Rebecca Jones, who expired yesterday morn- 
ing, after a very short indisposition. The respectable deceased 
applied for my professional assistance about three weeks since, iu 
the settlement of her worldly affairs. For some years she had lived 
in great seclusion, and was extremely a\erse to any communicatiou 
with your brother ; she would never see his wife. In fact, her 
relatives seem to have been disliked in proportion to the proximity 
of their residence ; and it is to your lonjjj absence from her that X 
ascribe the preference which she has evinced towards you, on 
which I offer you my respectful congratulations. 

** By your aunt's will (which is in my possession) she has devised 
to you several freehold interests in and adjacent to this town, pro- 
duvjn^ about £300 per annum •, she has also !ttvic\jxtt«iihed to you. 

A Duper Duped, 3 IS 

£2.000 fieeared hj mortgaf^ on the property of Mr. Deacon, o£ 
Aberystwitb, and a bond of Mr. Edmood Morgan, of Cardiff, for 

"t hope, Madame, yon will feel that in the capacity of your re- 
spectiye relative's confidential adviser I have not been hostile or 
ereia indiffemnt to joar interests ; and I beg to assure you that, if 
yonr affairs are entrnsted to my care, I shall mak« every exertioa 
^o ^ttfy ib» preference that I respectfully solicit. 

'* I have the honour to be, Madame, 

^* Your obedient, humble servant, 

David Wynne, Solicitor, 

•* PS. — ^Mrs. Wynne desires me to convey, with her respects, a 
request that if you visit Abergavenny, you will honor her and me 
by becoming our guest during your stay.** 

" Good heaven !" exclaimed Richard Gilmore, " how 
dcdighted I am, my dearest Lizzie, at your good fortune." 
i shall fully and faithfully observe my pledge ; but before 
we part, consider well whether you should not use your 
altered Gircumstances for your own comfort, for the com<* 
piece previention of every future pain and difficulty, and 
above all, for the sake of yotir unborn offspring. If I 
could, without absolute ruin, have redeemed the promise 
vrhdcli my passion produced, you should never have had 
oooasion to upbraid me, I loved you fondly, dearly ; and 
it is in your power to give me an opportunity of proving, 
whilst we live, a faithful and devoted husband." 
• "Ah, nol*' said Elissabeth, "our marriage could never 
be happy ; we would be mutually miserable. You would 
nerer respect her whom, in her supposed poverty, you 
scorned ; «nd our union now would be as much the sub- 
ject of scandalous comment as if you wedded me this day 
openly at the church of Castle ." 

" If you marry me, my darling Lizzie, I shall adopt 
mei^s to prevent exposure, or even suspicion. You shall 
llsave Vhis place immediately, go up to Dublin, and take a 
lodging in one of the small city parishes, where few Pro- 
testants reside. I shall obtain leave of absence, follow 
joa to Dublin, take out a license, and after a short stay I 
sbaii Mturi^ and effect an exchange to a rem-ot^ <^<(^);vx:k\?j^ 

1 1 4 Twenty Yeavi Eecollections. 

where I can present you to society as my wife, without 
any suspicion being entertained that our union has been 
too recent for your reputation. There your child can be 
born without any stain on its birth, or any cloud on its 
future prospects. Come, Lizzie dear, forget and forgive ; 
I am still your own fond Richard.'' 

He seized her hand, her struggle was slight, his arm 
encircled her waist, and on her lips he imprinted the seal 
of his future truth and of her present forgiveness. In 
two days Elizabeth Jones was lodging in Nicholas Street, 
Dublin, and in about a week Richard Gil more was married 
to her in the church of St. Nicholas. The wedding was 
very private and quiet, the only witnesses being the man 
in whose house they lodged, his wife, and two young per- 
sons whose attendance they procured. 

Three or four days elapsed, and Richard Gilmore ac- 
costed his bride. " Lizzy," he said, " I cannot delay my 
return to duty beyond another week. I have already 
made application for an exchange ; but before I return to 
the country, I think it would be well if I went over to 
Wales and regulated the future receipt of your rents, and 
also ascertained how the money due by Deacon and Morgan 
is circumstanced. If they pay five per cent, punctually, 
we shall be very comfortable. I have calculated that, 
with my pay, we shall have near £600 a-year. I shall 
buy a nice jaunting-car and " 

"You need not trouble yourself, Richard," said Mrs. 
Gilmore, very solemnly, " about my property in Wales. 
In fact, I have just taken a leaf out of your own book, 
and if the perusal is disagreeable, it is not to me that the 
authorship should be imputed. You made me a promise 
of marriage, you broke your word, and refused to save me 
from disgrace and misery. I procured a letter to be 
written about property that never existed, and made you 
believe that it was your interest to marry her whom your 
aifection or sense of honor did not suffice to shield from 

" You infernal Jezebel I you lying profligate I debased 
and degraded you shall be. I shall never live another 

A Duper Duped. 115 

hour with you. I shall never give a farthing to s.ive you 
or your brat from starvation." 

" I thank you, Mr. Gilmore, for myself and my coming 
brat. Thank heaven, you cannot say my bastard. You 
know what course it best answers you to take, but " 

Richard Gilmore was gone. Presently he was heard 
descending the stairs, and in a few minutes more the 
landlady announced to Mrs. Gilmore that her husband 
had departed, having first paid the lodging rent for the 
coming week, and having relinquished any further tenancy. 

Mrs. Gilmore heard this intelligence with surprising 
calmness, and replied by informing the landlady of Mr. 
Gilmore's position, and of the place where he was sta- 
tioned ; adding that she would stay for the time for which 
the rent was paid, and that then, when she would be really 
destitute, she would go to the wokkhouse. She imparted 
a good deal of confidence to the landlady, whom we shall 
name Mrs. Ganavan, and who, seeing that she would not 
lose anything, gave Mrs. Gilmore her utmost sympathy. 
Mrs. Ganavan was a fair specimen of human nature ; for 
we never refuse our sympathy to our unfortunate fellow- 
creatures when we are not asked for anything more. 

In another week Mrs. Gilmore proceeded to the South 
Dublin Union Workhouse, and there informed the admis- 
sion committee that her husband was a constabulary 
officer ; that his income was about double the reality ; that 
he had some private property and great expectations ; and 
that she, on the eve of her accouchement^ was deserted by 
her husband, and compelled to become an inmate of the 

The committee admitted the applicant, registered the 
admission, and brought the case before the Board of 
Guardians on the following Thursday, when they obtained 
a ready sanction to prosecute Mr. Gilmore for deserting 
his wife, and leaving her, as a pauper, chargeable on the 
rates. A summons bearing my signature issued, and the 
constabulary officer appeared at the police-court. The 
marriage was proved, as were the circumstances of the 
desertion. On the part of the Guard\a.Ti^ ^. ^^\{\.'^\A w*^^ 

H6 Twenty Years' Recollections, 

made for the immediate committal of the delinquent, to 
be imprisoned, with hard labor for three months. Richard 
Crilmore escaped a formal conviction by paying the ex- 
penses already incurred, and undertaking to allow twenty 
sbillings weekly for his wife's maintenance. All parties 
Ipft the police-court ; but in an hour or two after the case 
had been heard, Hichard Gilmore returned and applied to 
me to have Elizabeth Jones, calling herself Gilmore, ap- 
prehended on a charge of bigamy. He alleged that she 
had been married in Wales about four years previous t(x 
her marriage with him, and that her husband, Thomas 
Jones, was still living. His assertions were made on 
statemients which he had received from others. He had 
r^ legal evidence of the charge, and I refused to issue ai 
warrant for the apprehension of the alleged bigamist, but 
he determined to persist in the accusation. He seized on 
l^is wife in the public street, and gave her into the custody 
of a constable on a charge of felony. On the following 
morning he stated on oath that he had been informed, and 
fully believed, that the prisoner had been married to one 
Thomas Jones in a parish church near Carnarvon ; that 
said Thomas was still living ; and he further swore to the 
marriage of the prisoner with himself in the city of Dublin. 
He asked for a remand, and stated that he expected to 
produce witnesses from Wales to prove his charge. I 
remanded the accused for six days, and Richard left 
Dublin by the next Holyhead packet in quest of evidence 
to convict his wife. Before she was removed to prison; 
she sent to me a short note, in which she implored me to 
direct that no person should be permitted to see her ii^ 
the prison unless at her own request ; and further, that on 
the day for resuming the investigation, she should be 
placed amongst a number of females, and that the wit- 
nesses should be required to identify her from amongst the 
others. I considered those requests to be fair and reason- 
able, and directed that they should be complied with. 
Richard Gilmore returned to Dublin the day before the. 
resumption of the case. He brought over two witne^ses^ 
and sought at the prison to give them a view of t^loJ^ 

A Duper Duped. 117 

accused, but they were denied admittance. On the ap- 
pointed day Elizabeth Gilmore was brought from the 
prison, and placed in the carriage-court with about a dozen 
of other females, amongst whom was Mrs. Canavan, her 
Nicholas Street landlady, who manifested great interest in 
her sufferings, and great indignation at Richard Gilmore*fi 
attempt to transport an innocent creature whom he had 
vowed to love and cherish. Without separating the 
prisoner from the other women, I proceeded to swear the 
first witness, one William Jones, who stated that he was 
a parish clerk of some unpronounceable place in Wales ; 
that he remembered the marriage of Thomas Jones and 
Elizabeth Jones, and he produced the registry ; he recol- 
lected the matter very distinctly, the more so from the 
parties being both of the same name as himself. 1 
directed him to look at the women present, and to point 
out the one whom he had seen married at the time 
mentioned in the registry if she was amongst them. Mr. 
Jones walked to the group, viewed all the women, and very 
deliberately placing his hand on Mrs. Canavan's shoulder, 
identified her as the culprit. He was instantly electrified 
by a burst of abuse, delivered in an accent acquired much 
nearer to Patrick Street than to Penmanmawr. 

Mrs. Canavau's vocabulary was too copious to be 
select. I do not think that I could have restrained her, 
and I admit that I allowed her a latitude from which I 
derived some amu^ment. She descanted on the propriety 
of *' cropping the ears"* of perjured parish clerks, but gave 
ap that idea as, on full consideration, it appeared too mild 
a treatment for the Welshman. She proceeded to assure 
him, that there was not a gaol in Ireland that would 
refuse him admission ; and that in no place of such a 
description could he meet with anyone worse than him- 
self. She appealed to my benevolent tendencies to have 
the Welsh fellow transported at once, upon the grounds 
that it would be *' a charity ;" and she descanted on the 
physiological defect in such a parish clerk having been 

* Cropping the ears was in former times a punishment for per 

118 Twenty Years' Recollections. 

born without handcuffs, suggesting an artificial amend- 
ment of the natural deficiency. She thanked Mr, Jones 
for the pleasant news, that she had one husband in 
Dublin and another in Wales, and assured him that he 
might expect some very particular attentions from the 
Dublin one in acknowledgment of his testimony. 

*• And still she talked, and still the wonder spread. 
That one small tongue could utter all she said." 

The parish clerk was overwhelmed with confusion, but 
Richard Gilmore persisted in his charge, and demanded 
the examination of his remaining witness. Accordingly, 
a Mrs, Edwards was sworn. She deposed that the 
Thomas Jones mentioned in the registry was her brother. 
She had not been present at the marriage, but was satis- 
fied that her brother was living, for she had seen him at 
Swansea about a month previous, at which time he was 
proceeding to America as supercargo in a merchant vessel* 
On further examination, she stated that she was aware 
that Thomas and Elizabeth Jones had separated within 
the last two years, and this put an end to the case, for a 
reference to Gilmore's information showed that his ac- 
quaintance with the prisoner commenced nearly three 
years before their marriage. I remarked that the only 
allegation fully and clearly proved was the marriage of 
Mr. Gilmore to Miss Jones in the church of St. Nicholas ; 
and it only remained for me to discharge the prisoner, to 
congratulate the parties on the removal of all imputation 
on the legality of their union, and to wish them many 
years of connubial happiness. Richard Gilmore did not 
manifest the slightest gratitude for this kind expression ; 
he left the court without asking his wife to accompany 
him, but she was not compelled to betake herself again to 
the workhouse. Her weekly stipend was continued. Soon 
afterwards a son was born, and he is now a confidential 
employ^ in an extensive mercantile establishment in Dub- 
lin. I do not believe that he ever sought his father, or 
that his father ever took the slightest notice of him. 
Wishing him prosperity and happiness, I hope that he 

Who threw the Bottle f 119 

may never be necessitated to engage in any correspond- 
ence or enquiry relative to his mother's property in Wales, 
She resided for a considerable time in one of our southern 
suburbs, and latterly affected no secrecy as to the means 
which she adopted to effect her marriage, In the year 
1858, I expressed, in some conversations with a medical 
man of her acquaintance, a wish for the particulars, and a 
copy of the letter which I have given to my readers was 
enclosed to me by post, without any accompanying condi- 
tion, or even an indication of the quarter from whence it 
was furnished. 



In the " Dublin Annals " given in Thom's Almanac and 
Official Directory, it is stated in reference to the year 
1822, '*Riot in the theatre, on the Marquis of Wellesley, 
the Lord Lieutenant's first visit thither, during which a 
bottle was flung into his Excellency's box." 

At the time referred to, I had not attained a profession, 
and my magisterial position was twenty years distant. I 
have, however, a very distinct recollection of the affair, as 
I was seated about the centre of the pit during the riot, 
and I have to notice that the statement in the Dublin 
Annals is incorrect. It contains, perhaps, the only inac-i 
curacy that can be found in that voluminous and compre-> 
hensive publication. No bottle was flung into the viceregal 
box, but a rattle was thrown, which struck the front of 
the box, fell inside, and was raised and held up to the view 
of the audience by the Lord Lieutenant himself. A bottle 
was thrown from one of the galleries, and it struck the 
curtain in the middle with such violence, as to form a 
kind of bay for itself, and it slipped down on the stage, 
close to the foot-lights, and was taken up unbroken by 
the leader of the orchestra. 

Frosecutiona for riot were instituted, «t\id ^oiorci^^x.^^^v.'^ 

i20 Twenty Years^ Recollections, 

a man named Henry Hanbidge was indicted. To hinx 
vras imputed the throwing of the bottle, and some persons 
swore informations to the eflfect, that thej were in the 
middle gallery, and that the bottle was cast from the 
upper gallery to the centre of the curtain. The proceed- 
ings for riot were ineffective. There was no conviction. 

When I became a magistrate, in casual conversations 
with Pemberton, Cox, and others, the ^' bottle and rattle 
riot " formed a topic. They said that the assertion of the 
bottle having been cast from the upper gallery was generally 
disbelieved* It was, in fact, regarded as an imposability* 
Major Siri* and Alderman Darley went one morning, 
whilst the prosecutions were pending, to the theatre, bring- 
ing a lafge hamper of bottles, and accompanied by some 
active and powenul peace-officers, who were directed to 
throw bottles from the upper gallery to the curtain, but 
not a bottle reached even the orchestra. The roof of the 
theatre sloped forward and downwards, and the elevatioh 
required to send the missile to the curtain in variably 
smashed it against the ceiling, and distributed the broken 
glass about the pit. The . Major and Alderman came to 
the conclusion that the riotous bottle had been cast from 
the boxes or lower gallery* 

In about ten years after the affair at the theatre^ the? 
howse of Sir Abraham Bradley King in Dame Street wa» 
consumed by fire. The conflagration commenced in the 
lower part of the premises, in which there was a great 
quantity of stationery. The first and second floors were 
almost immediately in flames. The catastrophe occurred 
on a Sunday morning. No fire brigade was then organized^ 
ho fire escapes had been provided, A man was in the top 
front room, and he had no access to the roof. A fearful' 
death appeard to be his inevitable fate, when another man 
emerged from the roof of a neighbouring house, carrying 
a rope of six or seven yards in length, at one end of which 
be had formed a running noose. He stood on the narrow 
parapet over the window, and let down the looped end tcV 
the poor fellow, whose only chance of escape depended o» 
the sheer strength and steadiness oi ati md\N\d\)ka\« "^V^^ 

.Excise and Customs Cases. 121 

fope was fastened round the waist of faim whom tire 
flames were fast approaehing, and he was carried along by 
the intrepid fellow whose courage and humanity excited 
him to risk his own life to avert destruction from another, 
until the window of the adjoining house was reached, and 
the rescue was completed. This heroic act was accom- 
plished by Henry Hahbidge. 

I had been ten or twelve years in office as a police 
magistratCi when I was applied to by a poor old fellow 
who was suffering acutely and completely debilitated by 
rheumatism, to sign a recommendation for his admission 
to Simpson's Hospital. The applicant was Henry Han- 
bidge* I most readily complied with his request, and told 
him that I would insert a few observations on has noble 
achievement at the fire in Dame Street. He expressed 
the deepest gratitude for my disposition to serve him. 
When I was giving him the document, I said, "Now, 
Hanbidge, might I ask you who threw the bottle ?" He 
replied, '* I did, your worship." I asked him " from what 
part of the house was it thrown ?" " From the upper 
gallery, your worship. A friend and I had emptied the 
bottle, and I ran my stick into the neck, and shot it 
straight to the curtain oiF the stick.*' My predecessors 
had not thought of such a mode of projection. 


During my tenure of office I had an undesirable 
monopoly of the cases brought forward for infractions of 
the Excise laws, and also an ample share of imputed viola- 
tions of the statutes regulating the Customs duties in the 
City and County of Dublin. The barristers who preceded 
me as magistrates of the Head Police Office, had, in con- 
sideration of such business being disposed of by them, an 
addition of £105 to their salary ; but when I was about a 
month in office, I was favored with a communication that, 
without prejudice to the continuance of the work, I was 
to be exonerated from the trouble of receiving or acknow- 
ledging the usual pecuniary remuneration* TKe i^^vic<i.<5.d.- 
jDgs ihsthnted by the Excise were, aAmo^X. SxiN^Yv^JS^-^ ^ ^ 

122 Twenty Years^ Recollections. 

an uninteresting character. I only recollect one which I 
consider, worth recording in these pages. The premises 
of a maltster were visited by a revenue officer, and in one 
of the rooms he observed that a board of the floor was 
rather loose under his step. He raised it, and found a 
shoot which led to another floor in adjoining premises, 
which were apparently untenanted, and in which a large 
quantity of fresh malt was in process of drying. The 
principal workman in the maltster's employment dropped 
on his knees, implored mercy, and said that he would 
confess all. He then stated that he had made the com- 
munication for the purpose of stealing his master's malt, 
and that he had taken away all that was found by the 
officer in the adjoining store. He produced from his 
pocket a key for the external door of the building in 
which the malt was found. The maltster escaped the in- 
fliction of a very heavy penalty, but the workman was 
convicted on his own confession of stealing the malt, and 
was sentenced to twelve months' imprisonment. 1 subse- 
quently was informed that during his confinement the man 
whom he had robbed (?) supported his family most com- 
fortably, and as soon as the culprit terminated his incar- 
ceration, he was received hack into the maltster's employment. 
As to the infractions of the Customs laws, my cases all 
consisted of tobacco or brandy, and the seizures were, in 
almost every instance, effected immediately on the arrival 
in port of the respective ships. I believe that the intelli- 
gence of smuggling ventures being on board was almost 
always furnished by those from whom the contraband 
articles were purchased, or by the attendants in taverns or 
liquor shops, before whom unguarded conversations might 
have occurred, and in some instances from both sources. 
According to my* recollection, the great majority of detec- 
tions occurred on board vessels coming from places belong- 
ing to the British Crown. Jersey contributed largely to 
the contraband traffic, Gibraltar afforded an occasional 
venture, and the timber, ships from the British provinces 
in North America were frequently made available to the 
JJJicJi importation of tobacco, A fine bri^ frota St. JaWs^ 

Excise and Customs Cases. 123 

New Brunswick, narned, as well I can remember, **The 
Hope," arrived in Dublin in the summer of 1852. She 
was boarded in the bay by some officers of Customs, to 
whom the master stated that his cargo was exclusively 
timber. No other description of goods xvrs mentioned in 
the vessel's papers. The oflScers proceeded to raise some 
boards at the foot of the cabin stair, and tojk out a large 
quantity of Cavendish, tobacco. They then entered the 
cabin and removed some other boards, finding an abun- 
dance of tobacco, which had been there concealed. The 
master was arrested, and having been brought before me, 
I remanded the case, by the wish of all parties, for a week. 
The revenue authorities did not institute any proceedings 
involving the condemnation of the brig, but they sought 
the conviction of the master, who was adjudged by me to 
pay two hundred pounds, or in default of such payment, 
to be iujprisoned for six months. His wife had been the 
companion of his unfortunate voyage, and their separation, 
on his committal to prison, was extremely sad. He was a 
fine-looking young man ; I think his name was Harris, 
and he stated that he belonged to St. John's. The wife 
was also a native of that place, and I never beheld a 
woman who, in my opinion, surpassed her in personal 
beauty. Moreover, she was very near the time when to 
the designation of "wife" the term "mother'' would be 
added. Whilst I condemned the man I deeply com- 
miserated the woman, and all who witnessed their parting 
sympathized in her affliction. At the Richmond Bride- 
well, he was treated with much kindness, and was fre- 
quently allowed access to the gardens, to which, as well 
as to his prison-room, his wife was constantly admitted. 
There was a young man confined at that time at the 
instance of some of his relatives. He was a very extra- 
ordinary person. In him great literary attainments wore 
combined with imaginative power ; he had a mind which 

** Give to airy nothing 
A local habitation auda lifume,^^ 

124 Twenty Tears* Recollections, 

He sometimes lapsed into excessive intemperance, during 
which he exhibited such violent tendencies as justified a 
committal for two months in default of substantial bail. 
This imprisonment brought him into association with 
Harris the tobacco smuggler. They became confidential 
friends. At this time about two months of the smuggler's 
term had expired, and his fellow-prisoner expressed an 
anxiety that they should both be liberated together. 
Harris could not perceive how such a wish could be 
accomplished, but the other thought it perfectly feasible. 
He prepared a memorial to the Commissioners of Customs, 
which he desired Harris to sign, and it was forwarded 
forthwith. In a few days I received a letter from the 
solicitor of the Customs, and with it the memorial. The 
Commissioners expressed their willingness to have three 
months taken otF the term of the smuggler's incarcera- 
tion, provided that the committing magistrate did not 
object to such a commutation. I immediately forwarded 
the fullest approval of such lenity, and having read the 
memorial, I returned it to the solicitor. I regret that I 
did not keep a copy of it, for it was a document which I 
feel myself imcompetent to describe in terms suitable to 
its merits. In refined and elegant language it acknow- 
ledged the commission of the offence and the justice of 
the punishment inflicted. It declared a determination to 
abstain in future from every wilful infraction of the laws, 
and implored the commiseration of those to whom it was 
addressed for the misery to which the memorialist was 
reduced, even though it had originated in his own mis- 
conduct. His young and affectionate wife, who had 
accompanied him from her native country, had been una- 
ble to withstand the pressure of their misfortunes, and 
had gone to an early grave in a strange land, being 
attacked by premature childbirth. He had not even the 
mournful privilege of assisting at the interment of his 
beloved consort and her offspring ; but from the gloomy 
precincts of a penal prison he besought the authorities to 
come to the merciful conclusion that he ha(J suffered 

Excise and Custom Cases, 125 

Half of his imprisonment was abrogated, and the time 
of his discharge was at hand. I was about to leave the 
police-court on an afternoon, when I was informed that a 
lady earnestly requested an interview for a few minutesw 
To this application I acceded : and the fair visiter, having 
apologized for her intrusion, proceeded to inquire — 

** If you please, sir, will you kindly inform me whether 
my husband's time of imprisonment is to be calculated 
from the day of his arrest or from the day of his trial ?" 

I asked the name of the lady, and she replied that she 
was Mrs. Harris. . I remarked that "I was agreeably 
surprised, as I had seen it stated that she was dead.** 

" Oh, sir," she exclaimed. " that was put in the memo- 
rial by Mr. without even my husband's knowledge. 

However, I lost my little baby. But I hope that you will 
not tell that I am alive." I then informed her that hei? 
busband^s term commenced from the date of his convic- 
tion, and she retired. I did. not feel it necessary to give 
any publicity to Mrs. Harris's continued existence. 

When the Ajax man-of-war was stationed at Kings- 
town, the officer in command frequently exercised his 
crew in warlike operations. In the year 1844, as well as 
I now recollect, he announced his intention to have a 
mimic attack made on the ship, by boats, at night. A 
vast number of persons assembled to behold a spectacle 
intrinsically grand and peculiarly novel to a DubliA 
public. The operations commenced about ten o'clock, and 
continued for upwards of an hour. Signals of alarm were 
displayed by numerous lights of various colours, and they 
were succeeded by tremendous discharges of artillery and 
musketry, above which the cheers of the supposed com- 
batants were frequently audible. At length the assailants 
retired, and the Ajax remained intact and triumphant. 
The spectators were most enthusiastic in their applause of 
the bloodless conflict, which certainly was most deserving 
of public admiration. However, it afterwards transpired 
that during the sham battle in the harbour, some extraor- 
dinary operations were effected in the vicinity. A smug- 
gling vessel landed a cargo of tobacco clo%^ \.q \.Vi^ ^^^g^ 

126 Twenty Years^ Recollections. 

town end of the eastern pier, but outside the harbour. 
The venture was completely successful, and several days 
elapsed before the revenue authorities received any inti- 
mation of such a daring proceeding. The cargo was con- 
veyed away partly by rail, partly by road, and it was re- 
ported that almost the whole of it was transmitted to 
Limerick, but nothing tangible resulted from enquiries or 
searches. On the same night another cargo was landed 
on Dalkey Island, and hastily concealed amongst the 
rocks. It was supposed to have been brought by a con- 
sort of the craft which had made the other run. On the 
following day, a man, apparently of the seafaring class, 
gave information to the Customs that he knew where 
there was a large quantity of contraband tobacco con- 
cealed, and that he was willing, for the usual remunera- 
tion, which I believe was nearly half the value of the 
commodities, to conduct them to the place. He accord- 
ingly took them to Dalkey Island, where they found the 
tobacco. It was subsequently rumoured, and I believe 
the rumour was well-founded, that he was the master of 
the vessel from which it had been landed ; and as on6 
cargo had been successfully smuggled, and the vessels 
had got away in safety, the reward, incident to discover- 
ing the other cargo, was sufficient to pay the prime cost 
and expenses of the two ventures, and to realize a consi- 
derable profit on the whole transaction. 

Lest the favorable issue of the illicit speculation which 
1 have last narrated should have the effect of encouraging 
or even suggesting to any individual any connection with 
such traffic, I would say that I noticed the successful 
issue of the enterprise as an extraordinary and exceptional 
incident. Detection is generally the result, with forfei- 
ture of the goods, fine, or imprisonment. About four 
years before I retired from office, a young man who had 
a fine fishing-boat at Howth, and who was engaged to be 
married, went off to Jersey, and freighted his craft with 
tobacco and brandy. A revenue cutter was sent to 
meet him, and he was captured within view of his native 
hiJi His vessel forfeited, his cargo seized^ himself a pri- 

John Sargeant 127 

soner, and utter ruin substituted for his dazzling but delu* 
sive hopes, he lapsed into the extreme of despair, jumped 
overboard, and perished. His fate should deter, more 
than a casual and extraordinary escape should encourage, 
an infraction of the revenue laws. 



I SHALL now present a magisterial reminiscence which 
derives its greatest interest from antecedent occurrences, 
the first of which brings me back to 1821, the year in 
which George the Fourth visited Ireland. If I become a 
little dififuse in my recollections of the period, it is because 
they are strongly •impressed on my memory, and extra- 
ordinary in their nature. Nothing could exceed the 
universal homage tendered to the king. If it has been 
termed " servile adulation " by some, I am not prepared 
to insist on a complete exoneration of our national cha- 
racter from such an imputation. I was then an undergra- 
duate of the University of Dublin. On the day of the 
Koyal entry, we, the students, possessed ourselves of the 
railings in front of the College, as affording an excellent 
view of the procession. The rails were freshly painted, 
and produced a most piebald appearance on our hands and 
clothes (blue coats with " welcome " buttons, white waist- 
coats and trousers.) We rubbed some of the paint off 
our hands on the faces and clothes of each other previous 
to proceeding to the Castle with the University Address. 
On entering the upper yard from Cork Hill, we marched 
to the right by the footway, and had an opportunity, of 
"which we availed ourselves, of pulling the white caps off 
some of the cooks and scullions who were viewing us from 
the two lower windows in the farthest corner of the yard. 
We jostled each other up the staircase, and during the 
reading of the Address, amused ourselves b^ dvmX^\xi.^ ^^ 

128 Twenty Years' Recolkctwns, 

each other's shoulders by turns in order to have a better 
view. Some of us, amongst whom I was one, suggested 
rather loudly, that cakes and wine would be acceptable. 
This produced a counter suggestion from some officials 
of our immediate retirement from the State apartments. 
On reaching the hall, I observed the porters and other 
attendants sternly expelling a tall female who was dressed 
in deep blacjc. She appeared in great affliction, but was 
accorded ne^ sympathy. No one thought that anyone else 
had a right to be sad when the King was in Ireland* I 
subsequently saw the " woman in black," ^t the review in 
the Phoenix Park, vainly endeavouring to approach the 
Royal presence. I was a spectator of the various public 
demonstrations during the Royal sojourn, and enjoyed 
the exciting pageantry as anyone of my age and tempera- 
ment might be supposed to do. I pass, however, to th6 
day of the King's departure, the 3rd of September. On 
the morning of that day, the place of his embarkation 
was Dunleary, but on his arrival he changed its designa- 
tion into " The Royal Harbour of Kingstown." He en- 
tered his barge very near the place where the commemo- 
rative column stands, and close to the inner end of the 
eastern pier. The ** woman in black " somehow managed 
to get very near. She endeavoured in vain to address him, 
and just as the Royal barge was shoving off, she rushed 
forward, holding a paper in her hand, and, in ber frantic 
haste, was precipitated into the water, from which, how- 
ever, she was speedily rescued. The king saw enough of 
her exertions and mishap to excite his curiosity, and or- 
dered her communication to be received and laid before 
ham. It was a petition imploring the Royal mercy fot 
her husband, who was then under sentence of death in a 
southern county, for burning his house with intent to de- 
fraud an insurance company. Her prayer was favourably 
considered. An act of clemency appeared peculiarly suit- 
able to the termination of the Royal visit, and the sen- 
tence on John Sargeant was commuted to transportation. 

At the time to which I refer there was a considerable 
portion of Kilinsunham prifion appropriated to the recep^ 

John Sargeant, 129 

tion of convicts under sentence of transportation ; and ia 
a short time after the successful exertions of the ^' woman 
in black " at Kingstown, John Sargeant was transmitted 
to Kilmainham, there to remain until a sufficient number 
of convicts were congregated to form a living freight for 
a transport ship, and to transfer the future advantages of 
tlieir patriotic exertions to a southern hemisphere. I use 
the term '' patriotic " in the same sense as the accom- 
plished pickpocket, Borriugton, applied it in a prologue 
spoken by him previous to the performance of a play at 
Sydney by a company consisting exclusively of transported 
thieves — 

" True patriots we ! for be it understood, 
We left our country for our country's good," 

At the time of Sargeant's arrival at Kilmainham, I had 
a very near relative who was a member of the committee 
or board which superintended the gaol, and I frequently 
accompanied him to the prison. Sargeant was a person 
of considerable educational acquirements. He managed 
to ingratiate himself with some of the authorities of the 
convict depot, especially with a Dr. Trevor, He was fre- 
quently employed in copying documents, which business 
he discharged most satisfactorily ; and I have often seen 
him thus engaged. When the other convicts were sent 
off, some pretext or excuse was made avaitable for retaining 
him, and after the expiration of two years, he succeeded 
in obtaining a pardon, and was released from confinement. 
The '' woman in black" did not witness his liberation ; she 
had previously succumbed to that fate which crime in- 
flicts most severely on those whose love clings to unworthy 
and guilty objects, even in suffering and disgrace; love 
which, like the ivy, will embrace a ruin with greater te- 
nacity than it would if the structure stood in its pristine 
strength or in renovated beauty. 

About three years more had elapsed, and I was residing 
in London, attending the number of terms requisite for a 
call to the Irish Bar. At Gray's Inn I was an adept in 

130 Twenty Tears' Recollections, 

all the duties then requisite for an admission to the status 
of a learned barrister-at-law, and indeed I brought to their 
inception no slight qualifications. I could decant old 
crusted Port without a funnel, my carving was con- 
sidered faultless, and the salads of my dressing would 
gratify the palate of Apicius Ccelius, In that society 
there was far greater intercourse between the Bar and the 
students than I ever observed at our King's Inns. I fre- 
quently derived great pleasure and, I believe, no slight 
advantage, from the conversation of those whose deep 
research and matured experience qualified them to utter 
words of wisdom and suggestions of prudence to their 
juniors. I was fond of attending the courts, and criminal 
trials possessed for me a peculiar attraction. One day I 
sat close to two barristers whom I had occasionally met 
previously. They spoke with great interest of a trial ' 
which was expected to be held at the Old Bailey on the 
following morning, and suggested to me to be present a 
it, and I followed their advice. The prisoner was alleged 
to have been concerned in various frauds, but the specific 
offence for which he was tried was for obtaining upwards 
of £800 under false pretences and representations, and 
by means of forged documents. It appeared that a West 

Indian Creole, Mr. D , had arrived in London some 

months previous, possessed of an immense fortune. He 
indulged in habits of extravagance most frivolous and 
ostentatious. He fell into the error of considering fast 
society good society, and formed acquaintances and esta^- 
blished confidences which a very moderate share of dis- 
cretion would have made him avoid. Mr. D had 

seen a lady, a member of a noble family, whose ancient 
lineage connected them with the most remote periods of 
English history, and in which gentle blood was thoroughly 

united with personal worth. Mr. D became deeply 

enamoured, and made no secret of his admiration, but he 
could not procure an introduction. His tropical tempera- 
ment spurned all patience and prudence, and an Irish 
gentleman, Mr. John Sibthorpe, took him under his 
guidance and protection^ and promised to realize all his 

John Sargeant, 13.1 

visions of matrimonial bliss. Sibthorpe advised that the 
lady's maid should be approached, and enlisted, with an 
ample bounty, in the Creole's service, and that she might 
be induced, in a short time, to convey letters to the adored 
one, "who could not long continue indifferent to the suit 
of an amiable, wealthy, and disinterested lover. The bait 
was swallowed. One hundred sovereigns were confided 
to Sibthorpe to be transmitted to Kitty, and a note in 
reply, purporting to be written by her, acknowledged the 
Creole's generosity and promised her best exertions. 
More money was sent and more notes were received. 
The lady was described as expressing a lively and grateful 
interest in the man who had manifested such an attach- 
ment. This encouraging communication produced a most 
Jrespectful but ardent letter from the lover to the lady, 

' and a further douceur to the maid. In due time Mr. D 

received a note couched in terms most favourable to his 
6uit, and professing to be written by the fair hand which 
he panted to possess. Enraptured beyond expression, he 
imagined himself at the summit of his wishes, when he 
casually and suddenly learned the aflSicting intelligence 
that the lady's nuptials with a noble suitor were fixed for 
an early day. Unable to restrain his feelings, he rushed 
into her paternal hall as she was about to enter her car- 
riage, and kneeling before her, besought her pity for a 
broken-hearted man to whom she had kindly written, 

Mr. D was interrupted in his expostulations by being 

kicked out of doors by the footmen, and he soon dis- 
covered that Sibthorpe had forged the correspondence on 
the part of both maid and mistress. The delinquent wad 
apprehended, prosecuted, and convicted. I heard him 
sentenced to two years' imprisonment with hard labor, 
and as he stood at the bar I had no difficulty in recog- 
nising the object of anxious solicitude to "the woman 
in black," the pardoned incendiary, the profligate John 

In two or three months after the trial of this swindler, 
I returned to Ireland, and engaged in professional pursuits, 
to which I devoted my attentioxv fex «too\>X V^^-^^ ^'^'^'3^, 

132 Twenty Yeari Recollections, 

I then became a magistrate of police. In 1844, I was 
doing duty in College Street Police Court for the late 
Alderman Tyndall, who was suffering from severe indis- 
position. An application was made to me by a director 
and secretary of one of the principal banks in the city, I 
think it was *' The Royal." They were accompanied by 
their solicitor, and it appeared that a bill of exchange for 
£100, purporting to be the acceptance of a gentleman of 
high position in the county of Wicklow, had been ten- 
dered for discount on the previous day, and that they had 
ascertained it to be a forgery. A close description was 
given of the accused, who had been told to call at the 
bank at two o'clock. An information was sworn and a 
warrant issued, and the delinquent was apprehended in 
the vestibule of the bank, whither he had the audacity or 
folly to proceed on his nefarious design. On being placed 
before me, he stated his name to be John Sharkey, and 
that be had recently returned from Oporto, where for 
several years he had been employed as a clerk in an 
English house engaged in the wine trade. I remanded 
the case for the production of the alleged acceptor, and 
during the intervening time very conclusive evidence was 
obtained as to the body of the bill having been written by 
the prisoner. At his final committal, I told him that, 
although I never before had any magisterial cognisance of 
him, I had no difficulty in recognising the person whom 
I had seen convicted at the Old BuUey, and who had 
previously been an inmate of Kilmainham, after having 
the sentence of capital punishment commuted to transpor- 
tation. The latter punishment was subsequently awarded 
to him in Green Street, and thus, as far as I am aware, 
was closed the career of Mr. John Sargeant. 


My magisterial office was held for twenty years and 
four months. During that time I was a Justice of the 
Peace for the city and county of Dublin, and for the 
counties of Meath, Kildare, and Wicklow, The division 

Two Murders, 133 

appurtenant to the Head Office comprised, at the time of 
my appointment, (in January, 1841,) about one-half of 
the southern moiety of Dublin, in which were contained 
the poor and very populous districts known as " The 
Liberties." In about six years after, we were required to 
supply a magistrate daily to the Police Court at Kings- 
town, for the discharge of the business incident to the 
townships of Kingstown, Blackrock, and Dalkey ; and in 
about three years later, the entire of the Metropolitan 
Police district south of the Liffey was assigned and con- 
solidated into one division, in which my two colleagues 
and myself had to discharge the magisterial duties. Per- 
sons apprehended in the police district for offences com- 
mitted in other parts of Ireland were brought before us to 
be remanded or transmitted, according to circumstance. 
I mention these particulars to enable my readers more 
fully to appreciate the extraordinary fact, that during the 
period which I have specified there never was brought 
before us an individual charged with a capital offence. I 
do not mean to induce an impression on the reader's 
mind that our locality was free from crimes of magnitude. 
Two murders occurred in our divison during the time 
referred to, but in each case the culprit was committed 
by the coroner. 

One of them was in the city, and the other in the 
county portion of our district. The former case was the 
deprivation of a wife's life by the hand of her husband. 
He was a house-painter, a journeyman bearing an excel- 
lent character for knowledge of his business, industry, 
honesty, and strict sobriety. She was the daughter of a 
tradesman in Rathfamham, and her person was exceed- 
ingly comely. Very soon after marriage, she lapsed into 
habits of the grossest intemperance, so as to acquire the 
soubriquet Simongsi her neighboursof " the drunken beauty." 
She was a frequent, though involuntary, visitor to the 
police court for having been found " drunk and incapable" 
in the public streets. One evening her husband found 
her completely intoxicated, and he discovered that his 
best clotJjes had been pawned to iutivv^ \)cva Ts^ftasiJSi Vst 


134 Twenty Tears' Recollections. 

her inordinate indulgence. She replied to his complaints 
and reproaches in abusive and opprobrious terms, until 
exasperated beyond the control of reason, the unfortunate 
paan seized an old sword-stick which happened to be at 
band, and with that weapon he pierced her eleven times 
through the body, three of the stabs perforating the heart. 
Curiosity led me to visit the scene of the sanguinary ter- 
mination of a union which commenced in ardent love, and 
might have lasted long and happily, if every hope of 
domestic peace and enjoyment had not been subverted by 
intemperance. I was present at the inquest, which re- 
sulted in a verdict of " wilful murder" against the hus- 
band. He was subsequently convicted at the Commission 
Couft, and received sentence of death. I exerted myself 
in procuring memorials to the Executive for a commuta- 
tion of the capital punishment, and in an interview with 
the Chief Secretary and the law officers 1 argued that the 
multiplicity of the wounds inflicted on the wretched 
woman denoted a sudden burst of uncontrollable passion, 
and not a premeditated design of deliberate and malicious 
destruction of life. I expressed an opinion that one 
mortal stab would indicate more malice than could be 
inferred from the eleven furious blows. My representa- 
tions were received with courteous attention, and the 
applications for mercy were acceded to ; but the unfortu- 
nate man died in the Richmond Bridewell in less than 
fiix months after the transaction. His heart was broken. 
J may mention here, that whilst I was a crown prosecutor 
on the Leinster circuit, and during my tenure of magis^ 
terial office, I never knew of an application for mercy to 
be made to the Executive that did not receive the fullest 
and fairest consideration, and I believe that all the 
Governments of which I had any knowledge or expe- 
rience were equally desirous to avail themselves of any 
opportunity for tempering justice with mercy. 

The other murder which occurred in our division was 
perpetrated in December, 1841, by a young man named 
Delahunt. In the character of this culprit there was an 
amount of cool^ dispassionate, and deliberate predilection 

Two Murders. 135 

for crime^ surpassing any details in the pages of the 
" Newgate Calendar," or the " Archives of the Parisian 
Police." About one year previous to the last-mentioned 
date, a poor Italian organ-grinder was found lying close 
to the wall of Bathfarnham demesne, on the roadside near 
Rathfarnham bridge. His throat had been cut, and a beh 
"which he usually wore round his waist, and in which ib 
was supposed that his scanty savings were stowed, had 
been taken away. A man named Cooney, a tinker, had 
been seen in the immediate vicinity of the place, and he 
had been taken into custody on suspicion, by the constabu- 
lary. An inquest was being held, when Delahunt accosted 
Colonel Browne, the Commissioner of the Dublin Metro- 
politan Police, in the Castle yard, and told him that he 
(Delahunt) had seen the murder committed. The Colonel 
immediately directed one of his Serjeants to take the man 
out to the coroner, as the offence had been committed in 
the county, and outside the police district. On being pro- 
duced at the inquest, Delahunt swore that he had seen 
Cooney murder the Italian. A reward of twenty-five 
pounds had been advertised for the conviction of the per- 
petrator of the fearful assassination, and that accounted 
for Delahunt's promptitude in offering his testimony. On 
the trial of Cooney at the ensuing commission, the jury 
disbelieved Delahunt, and acquitted the tinker. I am 
satisfied that they arrived at a proper conclusion, and I 
gtrongly suspect that if Delahunt really knew anything 
about the crime, it was owing to himself being the per- 

In about four months after the trial of Cooney, there 
was a contested election in the city of Dublin, at which it 
was deemed expedient to utilise the canvassing abilities of 
a considerable number of coal-porters. These energetic 
advocates of liberty took considerable liberties with such 
voters as they found recusant to their wishes, or even tardy 
in complying with their demands. They were provided 
with hackney cars, and provided themselves with cudgels. 
Individual resistance or even indifference to their behests 
occasioned 'v^ry forcible applications to the heads and 

136 Twenty Tears' Recollections. 

shoulders of any elector, and when they brought him to 
the hustings, his attention was invited to a reserved body 
specially stationed in the vicinity of the polling booths, 
from whom he was informed that he might expect very 
strong censures on his want of patriotism, if he voted on 
the wrong side. After the election, some prosecutions 
were instituted for threats and actual assaults on voters, 
and there was one case in which a retired military gentle- 
man had been dragged from his bed in a state of illness, 
and violently assaulted with cudgels. A reward was 
offered for the discovery and conviction of his assailants, 
and Delahunt at once came forward. He pointed out. on 
the quay, six coal-porters as the guilty parties, swore that 
he had heard them directed to go to the gentleman's resi- 
dence and bring him to the poll, and that he followed them 
and witnessed the entire transaction. They were com- 
mitted for trial at the Commission Court, and there 
Delahunt most positively identified the six. One of them 
had a large hare-lip, and the party who had been assaulted 
swore that the fellow with the split lip was not present at 
the outrage. Another of the accused established the fact, 
by the evidence of constables and turnkeys, that he had 
been convicted on the day previous to the attack on the 
voter, and that he was in gaol for drunkenness and its- 
orderly conduct at the time when Delahunt swore to 
having setn him assaulting Captain C . The six coal- 
porters were acquitted, and Delahunt*s sanguine expecta- 
tions of an ample reward were completely disappointed. 

On the 20th of December, 1841, a little boy named 
Thomas Patrick Maguire, eight years of age, was playing 
with some other children in Blackball Row. The children 
were of the humblest class, and Maguire was bare-footed. 
Delahunt, having previously ascertained his name, and 
that he lived with his mother in Plunket Street, told him 
that he had been sent to bring him to her. The poor boy 
went with him, but was not brought home. Delahunt 
took him to a distant part of the city, and called at his 
(Delahunt's) brother's lodgings in Little Britain Street, 
'where he stated to his sister-in-law that MawwlT^ vtas «l 

Ddahunts Crimes. 137 

stray child whom the police had given into his care to 
take home. He sharpened two knives at his brother's, 
and after his departure with the child, one of the knives 
was missed. In the meantime, he brought the little fellow 
across the city, bought some cakes for him, and took him 
into a lonely lane in the suburbs, close by Upper Baggot 
Street, and there between seven and eight o'clock in the 
evening, he cut the child's throat. In a very short time, 
the body was found, and taken to a police-station in order 
to have an inquest held. Delahunt reappeared, and stated 
that he had passed the end of the lane, and had seen a 
woman throw the little boy down, and that she passed 
close to him, and went hurriedly away. He said that he 
had no idea of the child having been killed at the time, 
but thought that the woman had chastised him for some 
offence or naughty trick. He named a woman, and de- 
clared that he could swear to her. Unluckily for him, the 
woman whom he designated had been very sick during 
the entire day, and confined to bed, to the positive know- 
ledge of several friends and neiglibours. Some persons 
recognised Delahunt as having been with the boy, and 
amongst them was the woman from whom he had bought 
the cakes. In a field adjoining the lane where the corpse 
was discovered, a knife was found, which was sworn to 
by his sister-in-law as having been sharpened by him, and 
subsequently missed. She also identified the body of the 
child as that of the boy whom Delahunt had with him at 
her residence. He was finally tried and convicted of the 
murder on the 14th of January, 1842, and was executed 
on the 5th February. He made a full confession of his 
guilt, and acknowledged that he had falsely accused 
Cooiiey the tinker of murdering the Italian, and that his 
evidence against the coal-porters was totally unfounded. 
He disclaimed all malice or illwill against the poor child, 
Maguire. He declared that he only wanted to be rewarded 
for convicting some person of murder, and that he could 
not originate such a charge without the preliminary pro- 
curement of a corpse. In a volume of Dickens's periodi- 
cal, AU the Year Bound, and uud^i \\i^ \.\X.\^ <5>^ ''^Q\^— 

138 Twenty Tears* EecolUcthns. 

Stories re-told," there is a full narration of murders com- 
mitted by Burke, Bishop, and Hare, for the purpose of 
selling the bodies of their victims to anatomical schools. 
Each distinct case of crime perpetrated by those mis- 
creants was of less aggravated turpitude than the offence 
for which Delahunt was hanged, for they contemplated 
the destruction of the sufferer as the consummation of a 
design, but Delahunt deprived one individual of life on 
the speculation that he would thereby be enabled to obtain 
a reward, perhaps a trifling one, by consigning another 
fellow-creature to the precincts of a gaol, and ultimately 
to the ignominious horrors of a public execution, for a 
crime committed by himself, and imputed, by his delibe- 
rate perjury, to an innocent being, whose hand was un- 
stained and whose heart was untainted. For a considerable 
time after his execution, he was reputed, especially amongst 
the humbler classes, to have been a police spy, and to 
have been in receipt of frequent subsidies from the detec- 
tive office. He was never produced in any court as a 
witness at the instance of the police. In the case of the 
coal-porters, he applied to me for funds to enable him to 
remain in Dublin until the trial was held, and I refused 
his application. He repeatedly offered superintendents and 
inspectors to swear to cases of illicit or irregular traffic in 
liquors, but they never believed his statements, nor would 
they, in any instance, avail themselves of his proffered 
testimony. No villainy could be more unprofitable than 
Delahunt's systematic attempts to support himself by false 
accusations of others. I feel perfectly satisfied that, in- 
stead of deriving the wages of an informer or spy from 
the metropolitan police or from the constabulary, he never 
cost the public one penny beyond what sufficed for his 
maintenance in gaol whilst under committal for his diabo- 
lical offence, and to provide the halter which he most 
thoroughly merited. 

The contemplation of such a character may not be un- 
productive of some salutary results. Whilst we acknow- 
ledge and admire the blessed tendencies of the most ele- 
vated virtues, a wholesome and very instructive lesson 

Murder of Mr. Littk. 189 

may be derived from the contrast exhibited and the even- 
tual disgrace and destruction almost invariably incident to 
a complete lapse into utter depravity. 






I SHALL now advert to a most atrocious murder which 
was committed in the Metropolitan Police District in 
1856. It occurred in the Northern division, and I was 
requested by the learned and worthy Chief Magis- 
trate, Mr. J. W, O'Donnell, to assist in its investigation. 
Mr. George Little, the Cashier of the Midland Great 
Western Railway, had not returned to his residence on 
the evening of the 14th November, and on the following 
morning, his relatives enquired for him at the office in the 
station. The office door was broken open, and he was 
found lying on his face in a pool of blood, his throat 
having been cut from ear to ear. At first the impression 
was that he had committed suicide, for a considerable sum 
of money was on his desk. However, it was ascertained 
by an examination of the body, that many very severe 
injuries had been inflicted, and that the skull had been 
fractured by blows from a heavy, blunt instrument. A 
coroner's inquest returned a verdict of " Wilful murder by 
some person or persons unknown," and a large reward 
was advertised for the discovery and conviction of the per- 
petrator. No arrest was made on suspicion until the 2l8t 
of December, when a person was brought before the 
Northern Police Court, but was very speedily discharged, 
I refrain from mentioning the name, because there is no 
doubt that the charge was unfounded. It was rumoured 

140 Twenty Tears^ Recollections. 

that an experienced London detective had been specially 
engaged to afford his assistance in the furtherance of 
justice, but nothing of importance transpired until the 
26th June, 1857, when a woman, named Spollen, informed 
a superintendent of police that her husband, James Spollen, 
was the murderer, and that he had concealed the bank- 
notes which he took from Mr. Little's ofl&ce in a certain 
place immediately adjoining a small house which he occu- 
pied on the railway premises, he being in the Company's 
employment as a painter and cleanser. The superin- 
tendent immediately arrested Spollen, but kept him in his 
own custody from ten o'clock in the morning until nearly 
ten o'clock at night, when he brought him to a police 
station-house and gave him in charge for the murder, pro- 
ducing the wife of the accused as the charging party. 
The place indicated by the woman was immediately 
searched, and a considerable sum in bank-notes was dis- 
covered concealed in an ashpit, and packed in a small firkin, 
which had previously contained white paint. Some money 
in silver was also found in a canvas bag deposited in a 
cistern, and the utmost publicity was given to the searches, 
the results, and the source from whence the information 
concerning them was derived. His wife's evidence against 
Spollen was properly rejected by the magistrates; and 
although the case was sent for trial on other grounds, the 
result was an acquittal. During the magisterial investiga- 
tion, I suggested that a portion of the Royal Canal close 
to the railway premises should be drained and searched, 
as I considered it very probable that some of the imple- 
ments used in the murder had been thrown into the water. 
When the search commenced, the superintendent an- 
nounced that whoever found the razor should receive a 
guinea. A razor was accordingly found in the mud almost 
immediately, but it was manifest that it had not been there 
until the search was directed, for it' was perfectly free from 
rust or corrosion. However, another razor was found, and 
the name of " Spollen " was on the handle. A fitter's 
hammer was also taken out of the canal, and it was more 
than jorobable that the razor and hamnieT had b^^u in. 

Murder of Mr, Little* 141 

fatal proximity to the throat and head of the unfortunate 
George Little. After the trial, some of the London papers 
commented in the strongest terms on the ignorance and 
stupidity evinced in the preliminary proceedings of the 
police officer to whom the case had been assigned. The 
bungling, blundering incompetency which characterised 
the transaction was described as truly Irish. They also 
complained that the English detectives who had been sent 
to Dublin were thwarted and impeded in all their efforts 
by the members of the Dublin force. I fully admit that 
the case was thoroughly mismanaged, but I must add that 
the person most prominently engaged, the superintendent, 
was an Englishman, and I deny that English detectives 
had to encounter Irish jealousy, as no person of the 
description was sent to Dublin in reference to that crime, 
or indeed in any instance within my recollection, without 
meeting a cordial, perhaps I might venture to say, a 
fraternal, reception from the Dublin Police. I may add 
that whenever our constables were sent to the English 
metropolitan district, they invariably returned with a 
grateful recollection of the kindness manifested towards 

In the case to which I have last adverted, and in some 
others which came under my observation, 1 attribute the 
failure of justice to the ignorance and consequent incapa- 
city of members of the police force or of the constabulary 
engaged. However, I consider it only just to remark on 
the paucity of instruction afforded to constables for detec- 
tive purposes. Activity of body, corporeal strength, general 
mental intelligence, and moderate educational acquire- 
ments, are considered sufficient qualifications for the dis- 
charge of detective duties, and further teaching is left to be 
acquired by future experience. In several continental 
states, reports of important criminal trials are arranged ibr 
the use of the police by an archiviste^ and instruction is 
thereby afforded as to the means by which guilt was 
established, or, perhaps, to the mistakes or rash preci- 
pitancy by which justice was defeated, or innocence 
accused. The essential difference belv^v^^^u ovxx ^^^Xvr.^ ^^sA 

142 Twenty Tears' Recollections, 

that which I have observed in France, Belgium, and 
Rhenish Prussia, is exhibited in the speedy arrests of 
suspected persons here, compared with the tardiness of 
apprehension in the latter countries, unless the prisoner is 
actually caught in flagrante delicto. The moment that a 
suspicion is entertained in Ireland, the supposed delinquent 
is seized, and thereby all chance of obtaining evidence by 
his subsequent acts is completely lost. The foreign system 
is to watch him night and day. This frequently eventuates 
in detecting him concealing property, weapons, or blood- 
stained clothes, or suddenly quitting his abode without 
any previous intimation, and perhaps under an assumed 
name. If we are to have an efficient police, we will find 
it indispensably neccessary to keep well-informed, shrewd, 
patient, watchful detectives. I have known many who 
contended that a constable should adopt no disguise, but 
that, in the uniform of the force to which he belongs, he 
should perambulate the streets, suppress disorders, appre* 
hend offenders, and when directed to execute warrants, he 
should go in search of the culprit openly and avowedly. 
To such I would suggest, that if in the organization of a 
police there is anything unconstitutional, it is rather to be 
found in the adoption of a uniform than in the attire of 
*' plain clothes." The old common-law constable had no 
uniform ; he went, and came, and mixed amongst other 
men, without a number on his collar or a crown on hid 
buttons, and still his oflGlce and its functions were not 
denounced as unconstitutional. A policeman in uniform 
may patrol our streets, suppress riots, restrain indecency, 
and apprehend the pickpocket or drunkard ; but it is not 
by such that the progress of the swindler is to be traced 
and stopped, the haunts of the burglar ascertained, or that 
the minute circumstances, trifling to the casual observer, 
but amounting, in the aggregate, to perfect conviction, are 
to be discovered and concatenated to establish the fearful 
guilt of the murderer. 

Having remarked the ineflSciency manifested by the 

officer to whom the management of the murder case at 

the railwajr was assigned, I tbink it fail to «x%\A) >Xiti^ 

Individual Efficiency. 148 

amongst some other members of our detective division, I 
have knoMrn instances in which great sagacity and promp- 
titude were evinced. Shortly after my appointment to the 
magistracy, an old man died in a lodging-house in Bishop 
Street. The place in which he had lived for nine or ten 
years was a small room without the slightest indication of 
comfort or even of cleanliness. Nevertheless, he was 
reputed to have been possessed of a considerable sum of 
money, which was supposed to be hoarded in some part 
of his humble habitation. Two of his relatives made 
oath that they believed him to have accumulated some 
hundreds of pounds ; that they suspected and believed 
that the cash had been purloined ; and they demanded 
that the house should be strictly searched. I gave a 
search-warrant to a detective named James Brennan, who 
proceeded to the house, and stated his function to the 
landlady. She declared that the man had been miserably 
poor, that he died in complete destitution, and that they 
had to bury him in a parish coffin. Brennan searched the 
premises most rigidly, but the expected treasure was not 
forthcoming. Some of the landlady's female neighbours 
expressed great indignation at '* any honest woman's 
place being ransacked after such a manner." One of 
the garrulous sympathizers declared that '* so far w^as the 
landlady from having a lot of money, that she was hard 
set to live, and that the very night the old man died, the 
poor woman had to pledge her best feather bed, at Booth's 
the pawnbroker's, for a few shillings." Brennan took his 
leave, and immediately went to the pawn-ofBce. He had 
the bed produced, and observed that the stitching on one 
seam was fresher in appearance than on the others. He 
lipped the seam, and in the middle of the feathers he 
found seven notes, each of a £100, and two of £20. 
The affair eventuated in the money being divided amongst 
the kindred of the deceased. The landlady denied all 
knowledge of the money, and insisted that the old man 
must have concealed it himself. She was not prosecuted, 
but Brennan's intelligence was rewarded with one of the 

144 Twenty Years' EecoUecttons. 

The residence of the late Dr. Graves in Merrion Square 
was robbed several years ago, by the thiefs entrance at 
the windows of the front drawing-room, which had been 
left unfastened. The balcony did not appear accessible by 
ordinary means, but was easily attained from that of the 
adjoining house. Brennan was sent to examine the 
premises, and he at once perceived the traces left by a 
soiled foot in climbing by the pillars of the hall-door next 
to Dr. Graves's ; he then walked over to the rails of the 
square, and found marks which satisfied him that some 
person had recently crossed; amongst the bushes there 
were a few heaps of twigs, the parings or prunings of the 
shrubs ; and beneath one of them he discovered an exca- 
vation or cache, in which was a quantity of the stolen 
property. At night he lay down at a little distance from 
the place, and was not long there before a person ap- 
proached and proceeded to take up the property. At the 
rails he was giving it to an associate, when, on a signal 
from Brennan, some other constables came forward, and 
the burglars were secured. They were subsequently con- 
victed and transported. 


I have known several instances in which innocence has 
derived complete protection, even from the inconvenience 
of any arrest or personal interference, from the tact and 
intelligence of members of that force, to which a most 
greedy appetite for convictions is freely attributed. 

About ten years before I became a magistrate, a con- 
siderable portion of the County of Cork was a scene of 
disturbances, which might be fairly termed insurrec- 
tionary. Amongst other outrages which were then perpe- 
trated, was the murder of a clergyman, the Kev. Mr. 
Hewson, who was shot on the high road, and in the open 
day, in the vicinity of Bandon, No clue was obtained 
whereby the guilty parties could be discovered, and the 
offence has never been punished. In the year 1842, a 
soldier in a regiment stationed at Frederipton, New 

A Ftil84 Accusation 'Exposed. 149 

wick, stated to his officer that he had been con- 
. in the crime, and he named two persons as his 
plices ; the man was sent home and brought up be- 
ta for examination. A detective informed kne tlmt 'he 
^n, at the period of the murder, orderly to the con-^^ 
arlj officer at Bandon ; that he had been at the scener 
nee very soon after its commission, and ihat'he wished' 
present at the examination of the self *acensed; pri-r 
To this I acceded, and the soldier detailed that^ 
\ day and at the hour when the- clergyman* war 
ired, he and two men, whom he named, met' the' 
unate gentleman on his way home, that oneof them'^ 
■his horse, and the other shot him with a'blun* 
as ; that they immediately fled, and he ' made a' 
lentrof where and how they spent the remainder of 
ty. The detective, whose name, if I recollect rightly/ 
^nson, by my permission asked him, " Which of 
^cked the horse, and overturned the gig into ther 
at the road-side ? '* to which the reply was, *' I did/' 
en asked, *' Which of you cut the traces ? " The^ 
ise was, '* L' did." He proceeded, " Which of 
(truck the poor woman who saw the murder^ for 

ning ? " He was answered, " P did." The^ 

ogator then declared to me that the fellow was telU 
tissue of falsehoods, for the horse had not been' 
d into the giip^ and the vehicle was not a gig, but<^ 
Ltsido jaunting-car^ that the traces ' had not ' been' 
either was any woman near the place assaulted by [ 
Qurderers. Subsequent inquiries established the* 
;hat one of the persons accused in the soldier'^ t(M^ 
1 was, at the period of the murder, apprentice to 
inet-maker in Cork, a reference to whom and to 
I books showed that the party sought to be implicated 
een in hi^ master's concerns durihg the day of the 
ination, and for a considerable timre previous to amd ' 
the transaction ; and it appeared that the statement ' 
jecn made for the mere purpose of its fabricatdr^' 
sent home from service in a regiment -with \Hbich* 
Its discontented, and in wkieh* h^4\Qk^'^<Q!Q^xc^^<^^V 
disreputable character. 

146 Twenty Tears^ EecoUections, 


The discharge of magisterial duties with firmness and 
impartiality occasionally evokes expressions of approba- 
tion from those by whom proceedings may have been 
instituted or closely observed, and may even elicit a com- 
plimentary notice from an editorial pen. A deiep sense of 
gratitude for the exercise of magisterial functions is not 
so frequently avowed or ascribed. I am therefore dis- 
posed to bring before the reader the circumstances which, 
in a very public place, produced a compliance with a 
request of mine, accompanied by the expression, ** Any- 
thing that I could do for you, Mr. Porter, if it was even 
to put my hands under your feet, should be a duty and a 
pleasiure, for I can never be too grateful to such a worthy 
mag'istrate as you." This was said by a station-master of 
the Great Southern and Western Railway named Dufiy, 
in 1851, in reply to an application for a couple carriage 
for a friend of mine who was going to Cork with his wife 
and daughter. The guard of the train was directed by 
Mr. Duflfy to be most attentive to the party. My friend 
subsequently remarked to the guard that the station- 
master evinced a great anxiety to please me. *' So he 
ought," was the reply ; " the poor fellow is married to a 
real incarnate devil, and Mr. Porter sends her to gaol 
whenever she is brought before him." Habitual intem- 
perance, with concomitant violence, occasioned the frequent 
incarcerations for which the delinquent's husband felt so 


About the time to which the last anecdote refers, I was 
applied to, on a Monday afternoon, by a gentleman who 
asked and obtained a private interview. He was in a high 
social position, and possessed an ample fortune. He 
stated that his wife had lapsed into habits of intemper- 
ance which rendered his life wretched, and estranged him 

A Charge ofFdony. 147 

association vrith his friends, to whom he could not 
,0 have her deplorable tendencies exposed. When 
ated she was excessively violent, and did not hesitate 
Eiult the domestics, and that on the preceding even- 
le had assaulted, in his presence, a female servant, 
I poker. I told him to have her summoned by the 
it for the following Thursday, and I had three 
a mentioned as the hour for hearing the complaint, 
ady did not attend, and on proof of the service of 
immons and a sworn information of the assault, I 

a waiTant for her apprehension. She was brought 

me after all the other business of the next day had 
inished, and I required her to give bail in two 
is to keep the peace, and in default of such, to be 
oned for three months. At Grangegorman, she was 
mpelled to associate with the other prisoners, and 
atron's attention was invited to the case. At the 
lation of the second month, her husband, who had 
3d frequent letters from her, felt confident that she 
>ecome reformed, and I discharged her at his in- 

and on his surety. I aferwards met them frequently 
iety. I have seen her at viceregal parties, and 

observed the slightest appearance of, or tendency 
r former indulgence. I do not beHeve that she 
elapsed ; but whilst I am happy to notice a corn- 
reformation, my satisfaction is alloyed by the re- 
1 that it was the only instance of such a change 
ever knew to occur. 


IS frequently invited to the hospitable and joyous 
>f my cousin, the late Anthony Hawkins of Leopards- 
Stillorgan. On one occasion he entertained about 
e of guests, of whom I was unquestionably the 
Choice viands and generous wines sustained and 
ited the utmost hilarity ; and when some of the 
Qy expressed apprehensions that further indulgence 
bring them under the cogmzauce oi \Xi<^^^^<^^^^ 

148 Twenty Years' Recollections, 

host remarked that they would have ^friend in court^ for 
it could not be supposed that the jolly old magistrate 
would lean heavily in the morning on those who had been 
his boon companions on the preceding evening, and that 
each of them would get off for a song, which he would 
QUg^gest to be given in advance. Two young fellows, re- 
minded me that they lived on Merchants' ^uay, and as 
that was in my division, they entertained no fears. The 
company separated in time to avail themselves of the latest 
train to Dublin, and the two sparks travelled in the sapie. 
carriage with me. Neither of them was in the slightest 
degree "the worse for liquor;" and when we parted at 
Harcourt Street Station we shook hands, and one said,, 
"Good night, your worship, I hope you'll not be hard 
on us to-morrow." Next morning I was pn duty at 
Exchange Court, and when the charge sheets from Chan- 
cery Lane were laid before me, I was astonished beyond: 
description to find my companions who had bespoken my. 
leniency brought forward on an accusation of Felont. 
A constable stated that he had seen one of the prisoners 
get on the shoulders of the other, and pull down a large 
gilt salmon, which formed the sign over the door of a. 
fishing-tackle establishment on Essex Quay. On taking 
down the salmon, they were crossing over to the quay, 
wall when he intercepted them, and with the aid of another, 
policeman and a civilian, he captured and brought them 
to the station-house. Another witness proved that the 
prisoners stopped at the door over which the sign was 
suspended, and that one of them said, " Let us give the 
poor salmon a swim." This evidence induced me to 
believe that the transaction was not a deliberate theft, but 
^ .wanton, mischievous freak. The proprietor of the shop 
expressed the same opinion, and urged a summary adju- 
dication. They offered to pay for the sign, as it had been 
broken by an accidental fall ; and the court was convulsed 
with laughter when the proprietor observed that the salmon 
had been taken "out of the lawful season." The spree, 
post the two delinquents the moderate sum of six pounds. 
The subsequent banterings which th?y had to endure: 

Poor Pubs ! Who shot her ? 149 

amongst their festive associates completely deterred them 
from any further manifestation of fishing propensities. 

POOR puss! who shot her? 


A friend to whose inspection I submitted the preceding 
pages suggested that as they detailed many mistakes and 
peccadillos of others, a reader might consider it an agree- 
iible variety if I inserted a couple of errors peculiarly mine 
own. In accordance with his opinion I have to mention 
that shortly after I assumed magisterial duties at Kings- 
town, the proprietor of an extensive hotel in the immediate 
vicinity of the police-court received several letters threaten- 
ing speedy and fatal violence to him and his family, unless 
certain demands on the part of his waiters, postillions, 
and carters, were complied with. He was justly incensed 
ttnd alarmed at such threats, and submitted the obnoxious 
documents to the consideration of the authorities and to 
the detective agencies of the police force. His garden 
wall was close to the yard of the police-court, between 
which and the sea no building at that time intervened. 
It happened that an official, connected with the fiscal 
business of the county of Meath, had embezzled a con- 
siderable sum and attempted to abscond, but was captured 
on shipboard at Kingstown, and committed for further 
examination. The delinquent had provided himself with 
a most ample outfit for emigration and residence abroad ; 
and the articles found in his possession were deposited in 
a room adjoining the police-court and overlooking the 
hotel garden. Amongst them was a rifled air-gun of 
great power, and after the business of the court had been 
disposed of, I was, along with the. chief clerk, Mr. Lees, 
indulging my curiosity by pumping and discharging the 
Weapon. There was a bag of small bullets, of which we 
directed two or three at the wall of the yard. An unfor- 
tunate cat chanced to make her appearance in the hotel 
garden at a distance of fifty or sixty yards, and exclaiming 
that " I would give puss a start," I sent a bullet in her 
direction, without the slightest expeclalioii Oti^x, \Jaa ^oJv* 

150 Twenty Years' Recollections, 

would be fatal. The cat fell dead on the garden walk ; 
we closed the window, locked up the gun and bullets, and 
departed. Next morning, I was about to commence the 
charge-sheets, when the proprietor of the hotel applied 
most earnestly for a private interview. He was greatlj 
agitated, and declared that he felt convinced of his life 
being in danger from those who threatened to assassinate 
him. ** Your worship," he added, " they are manifestly 
bent on mischief, for our poor cat was found dead in the 
garden, and on examination she was found to have been 
shot. The fellow who killed her, did so only to show that 
I might expect the same treatment if an opportunity of- 
fered for shooting me." The poor man little knew that 
the weapon which inflicted the injury was in the apart- 
ment where he was expressing his direful apprehensions, 
and that he was seeking the sympathies and protection of 
him who had done the mischief. I took means, through 
a particular channel, to disabuse his mind of the feeling 
that the cat's fate was intended to precede a similar ter- 
mination to his own existence. 


The carriage complaints were usually disposed of at the 
Head Police Office in a court upon the ground floor. 
The light was derived from windows opening on a yard, 
and they were so near to the magisterial bench as to en- 
able its occupant frequently to hear observations and con- 
versations of an extraordinary nature. It was my custom 
to remain after the carriage cases were heard, and when 
the criminal charges or summonses were, in the upper 
court, brought before some of my colleagues. I was thus 
enabled, in. comparative quietude, to prepare reports on 
memorials referred by the executive or revenue authorities, 
or perhaps, to enjoy an occasional leisure hour over a 
magazine or newspaper. When the upper court was 
crowded, persons would betake themselves to the yard 
and frequently engage in conversation close to the win- 
dows, which in warm weather were generally open ] but 

Boaster and Barnes, 151 

there was no indication to those outside of the presence 
inside of a listener to their communications. In the summer 
of 1854, I was sitting alone, and reading the latest news 
from the Crimea, when two women took their stand out- 
side the open window, and one of them proceeded to im- 
part her sorrows to her sympathizing friend. At the time 
.to which I refer, recruiting was very rife in Dublin, and 
it was not uncommon for us to attest one hundred persons 
in a week. The utmost vigilance was exercised to prevent 
or detect desertion, and in the apprehension of deserters, a 
police sergeant named Barnes had particularly exerted 
himself, and had consequently received rewards to a con- 
siderable amount. This was the reason why his name 
was introduced into the narrative which I happened to 
overhear, and which I inscribed on a blank leaf of an 
interleaved statute. There is not one original idea of 
mine in the production, and I should not submit it to my 
readers if I did not consider it essential to the appreoia^ 
tion of the criticism subsequently pronounced by Mr. 

Mushal Katey Doyle, do yon know what? 

Share Jem has took the shilling, 
And off he '8 gone to Aldershot, 

It*8 there he Ml get the drilling. 
The polis now iilong the Coombe* 

No mbre will be resisted, 
And Fordham's Alley 's all in gloom 

Since Jem has took and listed. 
So 'have you got a dhrop at all ? 

My sperrits is so sinking, 
I do not think Fd stop at all 

If wanst I take to drinking. 

The night afore he wint to list 

I cribbM his half week's wages, 
And when the two 'r three hogsf he missed 

At wanst he wint outrageous. 

* A long thoroughfare in the Liberties of Dublin, supposed to 
bave been originally called *^ The Come.'* 

t A term used for English shillings, which previous to the change 
of currency, in 1825, passed in Ireland far thirteoa ^uca qqaIv^ 

152 Twenty Tears' Reeollectums. 

Next momin* to the Linen Hall 

He goes and takes the bounty ; 
It would not be so bad at all 

If he had join'd the Countj ; 
Eor they're not gone to foreign parts, 

And won't encounter dangers, 
But, just as if to break our hearts, 
. He join'd the Conaaught Bangers. 


The night afore he wint away 

He came to bid "good-bye" there. 
I thought to get him for to stay, 

That thrick we couldn't try there, 
For Barnes was watching, skulking round 

When Jem and I were parting — 
That polisman would make a pound 

On any boy desarting. 
I'm shure I'd like to take a quart 

Of Jameson's distillin', 
To drink bad luck to all his sort — 

The tallow-faced ould villin. 

So Jem is gone to Aldershot, 

Where 'tis I've no idea; 
Of coorse it is some desprate spot, 

Nigh-hand to the Crimea. 
There 's some entrench'd upon a hill, 

Some hutted in a valley ; 
I'm sure Jem would be better, slill 

At home in Fordham's Alley. 
For the Cossacks now he'll have to stoh. 

Or shoot 'em holus bolus ; 
I'm shure 'twoald be an efisier job 

At home to face the polls. 

In a week or ten days after I had perpetrated this pro- 
duction, I was sitting in the upper court, when I was 
informed by the usher that Sergeant Barnes was most 
anxious to speak to me at my convenience and leisure, I 
directed that he should be admitted, and he proceeded to 
request that Mr. Baxter, one of the junior cl^ks, should 
be restrained from singing a song which he had picked 
up somewhere, and occasionally lilted to the other clerks 
when unemployed, as it was most disrespectful, and ev^n 
termed him, Sergeant Barnes, ** a tallow-faced old 
villain;^' l4old the complainant that 1 should certainly 

A Runto'Cannavght, 153 

prohibit Baxter from continuing his vocal pastime, as it 
!was calculated to ;innoy an active and meritorious member 
of the police force. Barnes expressed his gratitude, and 
added, *M knew that your worship would never tolerate 
any of the clerks in abusing or ridiculing us. I readily 
acknowledge that I have received nearly £80 for detect- 
ing, and taking deserters, but I would spend every farthing 
of the amount if I could only discover the author of Mr* 
Baxter's song, I 'd punish him to the utmost severity of 
the Jaw for writing such a rigmarole about me." In 
About ten minutes after the interview, the song was torn 
out of the interleaved statute by the hand that had in- 
scribed it. The sergeant soon after retired from the force 
on a pension, and was, for several years, in a confidential 
situation at the premises from which the whisky was 
considered so desirable to ^* drink bad luck to all his sort" 
namely, Jameson's distillery. 







In the year 1842, I indulged in an excursion to the 
County of Mayo, and enjoyed a sojourn of a fortnight at 
the house of a most hospitable friend near Crossmolina. On 
leaving Dublin, I travelled by rail to Mullingar, and from 
thence proceeded by the mail-coach to my destination. I 
may mention here that a few months previous, a transac- 
tion had occurred in the vicinity of Strokestown which 
was of a most unusual, perhaps I might say an excep- 
tional, character in Connaught — namely, the murder of a 
landlord. I was the sole occupant of the inside of the 
vehicle, and as the journey was nocluxnt^l,. 1 \!i«>i^ ^Ki'H'w.^ 

16-4 Twenty Tears* Recollections, 

hours of sound and refreshing sleep. The stoppage of the 
coach in Strokestown to change horses awakened me, and 
I lowered the window in order to alight. The door was 
at once opened for me by a young fellow, who said, 
** Strokestown, sir." '* Oh I " I replied, " this is where you 

shot Major M ^." " Troth it is," said he, •* we are all 

rale docthors here, and when we can't cure, of coorse we 
kill." Such a jest, although prompt and witty, was not 
calculated to produce a favorable impression on the mind 
of a stranger ; but during my visit to the West, I did not 
hear an angry word spoken, nor did I observe any ten- 
dency on the part of the humbler classes to treat those 
in higher positions with hostility or disrespect. I was 
perfectly pleased with the country and the people, and my 
friend's hospitality afforded me social gratifications in 
which there was one novelty which I peculiarly relished. 
It was a liquor derived from no foreign vineyard, but was 
so peculiarly Irish as to induce one whom I am certainly 
not singular in believing to be the greatest lyric poet 
that ever existed, to make it the subject of song adapted 
to the joyous and spirit-stirring air of *' Paddy O'Rafferty." 
I shall quote the lines of the immortal Moore as fully justi- 
fying the predilection which I have acknowledged for the 
potation he describes : — 

** Drink of this cup^-you *11 find there *8 spell in 

Its every drop 'gainst the ills of mortality ; 
Talk of the cordial that sparkled for Helen, 

Her cup was a fiction, but this is reality. 
Would you forget the dark world we are in, 

Just taste of the bubble that gleams on the top of it ; 
But would you rise above earth, till akin 

To Immortals themselves, you must drain every drop of it. 
Send round the cup — for oh ! there 's a spell in 

Its every drop 'gainst the ills of mortality : 
Talk of the cordial that sparkled for Helen, 

Her cup was a fiction, but this is reality. 

** Never was philter form'd with such power 

To charm and bewilder as this we are quaffing ; 
Its magic began when, in Autumn*8 rich hour, 
A harvest of gold in the fields it stood laughing. 

A Present. 155 

There having, by Nature's enchantment, been filPd 

With the balm and the bloom of her kindliest weather, 
This wonderful juice from its core was distilVd 

To enliven such hearts as are here brought together. 
Then drink of the cup — you'll find therc*s a spell in 

It*8 every drop *gainst the ills of mortality ; 
Talk of the cordial that sparkled for Helen, 

Her cup was a fiction, but this is reality. 

** And though, perhaps— »but breathe it to no one — 

Like liquor the witch brews at midnight so awful, 
In secret this philter was first taught to flow on, 

Yet 'tisn't less potent for beipg unlawful. 
And ev*n though it taste of the smoke of that flame, 

Which in silence extracted its virtue forbidden, 
Fill up, there's a fire in some hearts I could name. 

Which may work too its charm though as lawless and hidden. 
So drink of the cup — for oh I there *s a spell in 

Its every drop 'gainst the ills of mortality ; 
Talk of the cordial that sparkled for Helen, 

fier cup was a fiction, but this is reality." * 


Amongst my convivial friends in Mayo, I expressed my 
regret that the liquor which I enjoyed so much in their 
festive society was almost unknown and unattainable in 
Dublin. In two or three weeks after my. return home, I 
received an anonymous note, stating that a box would be 
delivered at the Head Police Office, directed to me, and 
advising that I should not have it opened by any other 
hands but my own. The box arrived, and was treated 
according to the suggestion. It contained two jars, each 
holding two gallons of '* the reality.'* A flat bottle was 
frequently filled, and conveyed, in my breast-pocket, ** to 
enliven such hearts as I wished to bring together ;" but at 
last I found that the jars were nearly empty. About half 
a pint remained, and it was never drank. I was aware 
that the next day was fixed for the hearing of a number 
of complaints preferred for the evasion or violation of ex- 
cise laws. I directed the office-attendant to wash and 
thoroughly cleanse the inkstands, which were on the 
public table, for the use of parties prosecuting or deCeud- 

166 Twenty Tears* Recoilectiona. 

ing, and to bring the glasses to me. I procured some ink 
powder, on which I put the remaining portion of the 
Mayo " philter," and supplied the stands with excellent 
ink, well suited for ti^an scribing a strong charge or a 
spirited defence. It was not inodorous, and I was greatly 
amused by hearing the excise oflGlcers frequently observing 
to their superior and to their solicitor, that " they smelt 
illicit spirits*" Mr. Morewood and Mr. Stormont also 
recognised the peculiar smell, and formed various conjec- 
tures ; but none of the persons engaged ever imagined 
that the ink in their pens was made upon potteen. Imme* 
diately after the termination of the excise cases, one of 
my colleagues had the inkstands emptied and replenished 
with the ordinary ink. He said that " it was a fair joke 
on the gangers, but when they were gone he could not 
submit to be tantalised by the smeU without any chance 
oC enjoying the taste J* 


I was sitting one day at the police-court in Dublin, 
along with another magistrate, when a gentleman entered 
and preferred a very urgent request that one of us would 
accompany him to Kingstown, to witness and certify the 
execution of a power of attorney by his mother, in refe- 
rence to certain funds in the Bank of England. The 
applicant was reputed to be the natural son of a very dis- 
tinguished nobleman who had discharcred viceregal duties 
in Ireland, and also in very important and extensive oriental 
territories. I never heard what the original name of the 
lady had been, but she was known by the rather inelegant 
soubriquet of Moll Raffle. She had followed her aristo- 
cratic paramour to Ireland, and he had relieved himself 
from her claims or importunities by providing her with a 
Husband, and her son with an official appointment of 
i^spectable rank and emolument. I had never seen her, 
^nd I was influenced by personal curiosity to accede to her 
son's request. We proceeded to Kingstown, and on 
Arriving at a commodious and genteel residence, he desired 


A Lucky Accii3ation4 157 

the servant to inform Mrs. that he had brought the 

magistrate for the busmess required. In a few minutes 
she appeared, and although no longer youthful, or even 
middle-aged, a second look was not necessary to convince 
me that she must have been exquisitely beautiful in her 
features, and of a tall and symmetrical figure. Her right 
arm was bandaged and in a sling, and she exclaimed to 
her son that she was deeply mortified at having given me 
the trouble of coming so far on an ineffectual mission, for 
that she had unfortunately sustained a severe fall, having 
trodden on a loose stair-rod just after he had started for 
Dublin, and her wrist and hand were so much bruised as 
to render her incapable of making her signature. I told 
her that if she took the pen in her kft hand, I would, at 
her instance and request, guide it so a^ to write her name, 
and that I would explain the matter in a special magis-* 
terial attestation on the document. To this suggestion she 
readily acceded, and the power of attorney was promptly 
perfected. She insisted that I should take luncheon, 
after which I left. Not having to return to official duties, 
I sauntei^ed through Kingstown until about four o'clock, 
when I went to the jetty, which was crowded, as a mili- 
tary band was playing there. I was not long on the jetty 

before I saw Mrs. with half-a-dozen companions, but 

the sling was gone, and her right hand seemed perfectly 
capable of managing her parasol. I subsequently ascer- 
tained that '* Moll Raffle " had never been taught to write, 
and that she thought it more agreeable to pretend that her 
hand had been hurt than to acknowledge her educational 


In the year 1846, the Ribbon association, or fraternity > 
prevailed very extensively in the city of Dublin, and in the 
counties of Dublin, Wicklow, Kildare, and Meath. I 
believe that religious opinions or political tendencies had 
very little influence on their deliberations or proceedings. 
AU the information that I acquired iiiT«feiei&!(^\.Q\>Wai\^ 

158 Twenty Years* Recollections. 

me to the conclusion that their temporal interests actuated 
them throughout. Threats, menaces, and even murderous 
violence were used without hesitation to deter competition 
with a ribbon-man in affairs of tenancy, traflSc, or employ- 
ment. I notice these tendencies merely as being connected 
with a most extraordinary incident at the time. A man 
named Lacy held a small farm somewhere between 
Brittas and Blessington, and at an early hour on a Satur- 
day morning, he left home, bringing, with a horse and 
cart, various commodities for sale in Dublin. Having 
disposed of his goods, he was about to start for home in 
the evening. He stopped at a shop in Bride Street to 
purchase some groceries, and tendered in payment a crown- 
piece. It was a coin of George the Third's reign, was 
rather worn, and had acquired a dark and very question- 
able appearance. The proprietor of the shop pronounced 
the crown to be base, and used some expressions which 
irritated Lacy, who replied to them in vituperative terms. 
The grocer observed a constable passing, and having called 
upon him, charged Lacy with tendering a base coin. The 
man was taken to the station-house in Chancery Lane, his 
horse and cart were sent to a livery stable, and he re- 
mained in custody until Monday morning, when the 
charge was laid before me. Mr. Stuart, of Dame Street, 
a silversmith, was examined, and in my presence tested 
the crown. He pronounced it to be perfectly genuine. I 
accordingly directed the accused party to be discharged 
from custody, and I was not surprised at his expressions 
of indignation for having been detained and locked up 
amongst thieves and disorderly characters, and his horse 
and cart sent to livery, whilst his family could not but feel 
alarmed for his safety when he failed to return at the 
expected time. I directed his horse and cart to be given 
to him, and that the livery should be defrayed from the 
police funds. Scarcely had I disposed of the case when 
Lacy's wife arrived in an indescribable state of joyful ex- 
citement. She clasped him in her arms, exclaiming, 
" You're safe, all is right, thanks to God." She mani- 
fested no resentment towards the grocer, but wished him 

Crovm Witnesses, lS9 

good luck and prosperity. The cause of her delight may 
1)6 briefly explained, but it is not the less extraordinary. 
Her husband had incurred the resentment of the ribbon- 
men of his vicinity, by offering for land against one of the 
fraternity. On the Saturday night an armed party entered 
his house for the purpose of killing him, but their diabo- 
lical design was thwarted by the circumstance of their 
intended victim being in custody of the Dublin Police, 
upon an unfounded, but certainly not an unfortimate 
accusation. His family had communicated with the con- 
stabulary, lest the intended assassination might be perpe- 
trated on his journey home, and early on Monday morning 
his wife started in search of him with the result which has 
been stated. 


For several years subsequent to my appointment to ma- 
gisterial office, there were two houses in Great Ship Street, 
on the side now entirely occupied by the barrack, which 
were appropriated to the accommodation of crown wit- 
nesses* There was an internal communication between 
those houses, and the witnesses, of both sexes, were 
allowed to associate free from all supervision, except what 
served to keep them from leaving the premises, unless ac- 
companied by an attendant, and examining letters received 
or despatched by them. Their meals were generally taken 
together ; and for the amusement or employment of their 
evenings, they were left entirely to themselves. Amongst 
those witnesses almost every variety of character was to 
be found. A young man, whose name has lapsed from 
my recollection, was charged by a female with attempting 
to commit an offence which I need not particularise, and 
I was directed to investigate the affair at the premises, 
without imparting to it any avoidable publicity. The 
accused party denied the misconduct imputed to him, and 
attributed the charge to spite and resentment on the part 
of the complainant and another inmate of the place. A 
woman stated that '' the girl was vexed by tli^ ci^<(i'&\.v^va 

160 Twenty Y^ari Recolkctions. 

put to her, and the faults found with her eviden^ce ererj^- 
time that her case was tried/' I was greatly surprised ta 
find that the crown witnesses were accustomed to haver 
their evidence rehearsed before an amateur judge, an im^ 
provised jury, and a couple of supposed counsel, one to 
prosecute and the other to defend. If a case failed; the 
witnesses were instructed as to their deficiencies, either 
in manner or matter ; and they were drilled to avoid 
admissions of any nature calculated to weaken their 
testimony. I made such representations to the Eixecutive' 
as produced the suppression of the Ship Street establish- 


Very soon after my appointment to the police magis- 
tracy, there was a person named Jones convicted of being 
deeply implicated in the Ribbon system. He was not 
committed for trial from the Head Ofiice, and I was not 
officially connected with any of the proceedings in his case.' 
After he had been sent to another hemisphere und^r sen-^ 
tence of transportation, I heard casually from'a professional 
man, on whose statements I placed the utmost reliance,- 
that Jones had acknowledged to him being the person by 
whom the statue of King William in College Green was- 
blown up in 1836. There was no prosecution instituted 
as to that extraordinary affair, and I notice it only on' 
account of the statements subsequently made, and aH' 
incident which may be considered of an amusing character.' 
Two women of a disreputable class were standing at the 
corner of Church Lane in College Green just after raid-^ 
night. A man whom they had not previously observed,^ 
descended quickly from the statue, and having crossed' 
the rails which then intervened between the pedestal and 
the thoroughfare, he ignited a fuse which had been pre- 
viously connected with some explosive substance placed' 
between the figures of the steed and the rider. The man' 
rapidly decamped, the fuse burned quickly, and there was* 
an explosion yfhich was heard in almo^^^v^T^^oetoftke 

Surgical Asnstance, 161 

city, and by which the figure of the monarch was com- 
pletely separated from his horse, and thrown into the 
public carriage-way, several yards from the pedestal. It 
was reported that a respectable citizen residing in the 
immediate vicinity, who had been suffering for some time 
previous from disease of the heart, rose from his bed in 
hasty alarm, and almost immediately dropped lifeless. 
Jones, according to the statement of my informant, subse- 
quently tried to cut the head off the prostrate figure, 
but was deterred by the approach of a party of police 
from College Street. I believe that those who examined 
the figures of man and horse expressed a decided opinion 
that the explosion had not been effected by gunpowder, 
and the statements of the acknowledged delinquent denied 
that gunpowder had been used, but without his specifying 
what material had effected such an extraordinary resiilt. 


In the year 1836, Lord Mulgrave, afterwards Marquis 
of Normanby, was Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. He had 
an aide-de-camp, a Captain B , who has since supple- 
mented that name by another commencing with O. That 
gentleman then was, and has since continued to be, a 
most desirable addition to any social or convivial re-union 
in which writ and comic humor were appreciated. On the 

night of the explosion, Captain B was returning from 

some festive scene, and reached College Green, on his way 
to the Castle, a few minutes after the occurrence. He 
instantly ordered his driver to make for Merrion Square 
as quickly as possible, and to stop at the residence of 
Crampton, who was the first surgical practitioner of the 
time, and who was very generally considered to have a 
most persistent anxiety to establish acquaintance and even 
intimacies amongst the aristocracy. Captain B ap- 
plied himself to the knocker and door-bell until he had 
completely roused every inmate of the house, and to the 
first who enquired the reason for his urgent application, 
he replied, ** To Jet Surgeon Crampton knovi \.W\. ^ \«i7| 


162 Twenty Years^ Recollections. 

distinguished personage had fallen from his horse in Col- 
lege Green, and sustained serious injuries.** The hoax 
was successful. Crampton proceeded with the utmost 
haste to the place designated, and subsequently he caused 
considerable surprise by becoming the frequent narrator 
of the trick to which he had been subjected. 


In offering to my readers an incident or anecdote, I 
have the advantage of being free from any necessity for a 
consecutive arrangement. My recollections may suggest 
occurrences anterior to some already narrated without pre- 
cluding me from a description of them. About the time, 
however, to which I have last adverted, I was residing in 
Lower Fitzwilliam Street, and a young lady, a near relative 
of my wife, was a frequent visitor. She was decidedly 
handsome, and possessed other attractions of no inconsider- 
able value. Her admirers were numerous, and amongst 
them there was no more ardent suitor than a Mr. Richard 

S . He was an accomplished gentleman, of handsome 

countenance and line portly figure. He sang very well, 
and almost always adapted his voice to the music of his 
own guitar. His family was of high respectability in a 
southern county, but some banking speculations had 
seriously diminished their financial resources. His ad- 
dresses were most ardently directed, but the fair lady was 
not to be won. She was informed that her admirer sup- 
ported himself by some employments or agencies in the 
corn trade. He was refused, and almost immediately dis- 
appeared from Irish society. When I resigned the police 
magistracy in 1861, I was invited by my friend, the late 
Marcus Costello, to visit him at Gibraltar, at which place 
he held the office of Attorney-General. In a few weeks 
after my arrival there, he told me that some Spanish 
officers of high distinction were to cross from Algesiras, to 
visit the fortress and see the extraordinary productions of 
nature and art which are there so abundantly displayed, 
I" accompanied him and several other functionaries to the 

i George Robins, 163 

Governor's residence, at which, amidst the firing of salutes 
and other manifestations of respect, the Spanish officers 
were received. The principal personage amongst them 
was highly decorated. He had distinguished himself in 
the then recent warfare with the Moors, and was a general 
in the army, besides holding an important provincial office 
which, as well as I recollect, caused him to be designated 
**Intendente." To my great astonishment, DonRicardo de S. 
advanced to me, preferred his hand, enquired about many 
of his old acquaintances, and enabled me to recognise the 
quondam guitar performer, whose personal qualities and 
capabilities had been better appreciated abroad than in 
his native land. I may, in some later pages, have occa- 
sion to refer to other recollections of Gibraltar. 


About the time of my accession to magisterial office, a 
sale was advertised of two properties on the river Black- 
water. The descriptions specified two fine mansions, with 
the adjuncts of extensive stabling, gardens, ornamental 
plantations, and such a number of acres suited for pasture 
or tillage as would fairly entitle each place to be considered 
a demesne worthy of the attention of all who desired a 
residence fit for high rank and liberal expenditure. The 
advertisements stated the properties to be beautifully pic- 
turesque, and as a6fording ample means to the sportsman 
for the gratification of all his tastes or inclinations. But 
public attention was peculiarly excited by the announce- 
ment that the sale by auction would be conducted at 
Morrison's in Dawson Street, by the far-famed London 
auctioneer, George Robins. Not being the least curious 
of the community, I betook myself to the place appointed, 
and found the room crowded at the hour of one o'clock, 
P.M. George allowed fifteen or twenty minutes to elapse 
before he appeared and offered an apology for his delay, as 
having been occasioned by the breaking down of a vehicle. 
He then proceeded to address his auditors in a tone of, 
perhaps assumed, despondency and dvs<ioitt.l«\x\.^ \a ^}cL'^ 

164 Tucenty Yeara^ Recollections. 

following effect: — "Ladies and gentlemen, I feel deeply 
mortified at having to submit for public competition these 
properties, of which I have not the slightest personal 
knowledge. I regret having accepted the engagement, 
which I am decidedly unable to discharge to my own 
satisfaction. It was my intention to have viewed the 
houses and lands, so as to know what I could truly state ; 
but I was unfortunately detained in London, until it 
became impossible for me to run down to Mallow or 
Youghal before the auction. I think it very probable thab 
I shall take an early opportunity to see the places which I 
am now about to sell. My curiosity has been excited 
greatly by two gentlemen who travelled in the coach with 
me on my journey through Wales. They knew me ; and 
in the course of our conversation, I mentioned that I was 
proceeding to Dublin to sell these two properties on the 
Blackwater. They stated that they knew the places per- 
fectly well, and that I might expect a brisk competition, 
As we passed through the lovely scenery of Llangollen. 
Clwyd, and some other enchanting places, I expressed the 
most unqualified admiration of landscapes uniting all the 
beauties which hill and valley, wood and water, towering 
rocks and verdant glens can present to the view^ of a de- 
lighted traveller. My companions did not join in my 
fervent appreciation of the Welsh scenery. They said 
that it was certainly agreeable to the eye, but when com- 
pared with that of some other localities, it did not surpass^ 
mediocrity. When I reiterated my opinion that I had 
never previously viewed such beautiful landscapes, they 
replied that if I only took a glance at the places on the 
Blackwater^ which I was going over to sell, they would 
monopolise my admiration, and convince me of the utter m- 
feriority of the most picturesque portion of Wales. I have 
consequently a very great desire to see the two splendid 
demesnes which I must now offer for your competition," 
I do not insist on my readers giving implicit credence to 
the tale about the travelling companions. Whoever dis- 
believes it will not be singular. 

Th'. Greek Count--The Rats. 165 


I had the pleasure of being intimately acquainted with 
the late Thomas Symes of Leinster Street. He was a 
solicitor of the highest respectability, and was an universal 
favorite in a very extensive circle He had travelled much, 
especially in the southern parts of Europe ; and few foreign- 
ers from those localities, if of rank or consideration, came 
to Dublin without experiencing his attentions. Amongst 
those whom I met at his house, there was only one in 
whom I observed a tendency to make statements which 
were worthy of observation and productive of amusement 
fiom the total absence of any truthful ingredient. He 
was a Greek, and was also a Count, and not a Baron, so* 
that he could not be mistaken for a personage of the latter 
dignity, whose name commenced with the same letter. 

Count M was not the veritable Baron Munchausen, 

but he was decidedly his rival in demands on the credulity 
of those who heard his asservations. He never spoke to 
the disparagement of any human being except Otho, who 
was then King of Greece, and whom he occasionally ex- 
pressed a wish to burn. He spoke English and some 
other languages with wonderful fluency, and no matter 
what subjects appeared most agreeable to any company, 
the Count never failed to introduce and expatiate on the 
surprising intelligence of Rats, and he invariably closed 
each anecdote with a declaration that '^ upon his sacred 
word of honor it was strictly true." 

" I was obliged," said he, " to leave Athens by the tyran- 
nical persecution of Otho, and I betook myself to Zaiite, in 
which island I possessed extensive currant grounds and 
olive plantations. In our oil cellar we had a large tun and a 
great number of jars and flasks, which were generally well 
filled. We found, however, that the jars and bottles pre- 
pared for corking and sealing in the evening were lessened 
by some inches as to their contents in the morning. 
Having closely and quietly watched, we found that the rats 
took it in turn to Jet down their tavVamV.o\)cv&^^'%^%^*ij^^ifi^ 

16G Twenty Years^ Recollections, 

to enable the others to lick off the oil thus abstracted. 
The store tun appeared to be full to the bung-hole ; but 
when the contents were drawn off for refining, we dis- 
covered that the rats had kept the oil up to the oritice by 
dropping pebbles into the vessel. I pledge you my sacred 
word, &c. 

" I was one day strolling through the currant grounds, 
and provided with an excellent fowling-piece, in the hope 
of meeting with quail. I was near to a small stream, 
when I observed two rats approaching the water. They 
were so close together that their sides appeared to be 
touching, and I killed both in one shot. On going to the 
spot where they were lying, I immediately perceived that 
one rat was blind, and between them there was a little 
'Straw blade, of which each had held an end in his mouth. 
It was thus that the blindness of one was productive of 
^agacious care and attention in the other. I pledge 
you," &c. 

I have lately observed that the Count is mentioned in 
The Life and Recollections of the Hon. Granville Berkeley, 
but without any allusion to the extraordinary tendencies 
3nd dexterous expedients which, amongst us, he attributed 
to such hateful vermin. 


Amongst my personal recollections, there is one which 
I hope to narrate without ruffling or alarming the most 
sensitively delicate of my readers, although amongst the 
prominent characters of the scene about a dozen belonged 
to the most wretched and- degraded portion of the female 
sex, and dwelt in a mean, loathsome, and disreputable 
locality named Cole Alley, which was, and perhaps still 
continues to be, occupied by denizens of a similar descrip- 
tion . I shall apply to them the term adopted by Hood in 
his exquisite production of " The Bridge of Sighs," and 
designate them " unfortunates." I had been a magistrate 
for three or four years, when I was one day informed by 
.the attendant of the police-court t\iaX ^ ds^uXaXvoa of 

Hie Child of the AlUy. 1 67 

females from Cole Alley earnestly besought me to givd 
them an audience. My colleagues were amused at the 
application, and ironically congratulated me on such an . 
exclusive preference ; but I determined to accede to the 
request, and directed them to be admitted. About twelve 
of thenii entered the court, and amidst the " unfortunates*' 
I perceived a female child of ten or eleven years of age. 
The spokeswoman of the party led this child forward, and 
addressed me to the following effect: — 

*' Yer worship, this poor little girl was born in the alley. 
She was not quite a year old when the collar (cholera) 
made a great sweep up there, and took off her mother, 
who was one of us. The child had no one to care her, so 
we agreed to do the best we could for her, and we gave 
her a bit of food, a rag or two to cover her, and she lived 
about among us, so that we used to call her our own child. 
But now, yer worship, we see that she is coming to a time 
of life when to stay in the alley would be her destruction. 
We are doatingly fond of her, and it would be a heartscald 
to us all to think of her ever falling into our course of life. 
We would beg of you to have her put into some school or 
institution where she will be reared in decency, and trained 
to earn honest bread." 

I at once stated to " the deputation" that I should do 
my utmost to realize their wishes, and that they might 
leave the child to my care. They embraced her most 
affectionately, and with the warmest thanks for my com- 
pliance, they departed. The Poor Law Unions had not 
been organized at the time, and I sent the child on a 
remand committal to the worthy matron of Grangegorman 
Prison, Mrs. Rawlins, with a note explaining the circum- 
stances, and requesting that the little girl should be kept 
apart from the juvenile delinquents. My wishes were 
strictly complied with. On the following day, I dined at 
Portrane with the worthy George Evans. I mentioned the 
transaction to him, and he communicated it to his sister, 
Mrs. Putland. That lady was an impersonation of charity, 
and at once offered to have the " child of the alley" placed 
in one of the many institutions whvcli s\ife ^onXx^xiNsA. Na 

108 Twenty Tears^ Recollections. 

support. I regret that I am unable to state any further 
results, having omitted to make ulterior enquiries, but I 
have always considered the earnest application, perhaps I 
might fairly term it the supplication^ of the Cole Alley 
" unfortunates" as the strongest acknowledgment, offered 
sincerely and spontaneously, by Vice of the superiority of 

the lucky shot. 

A female of the class to which I have adverted was an 
inmate of one of the many disreputable houses which 
constituted almost the entire of a street on the south side 
of Dublin. It was called " French Street " but the ob- 
noxious establishments having been suppressed, it is now 
designated " Upper Mercer Street." An English com- 
mercial traveller betook himself to the house in which the 
** unfortunate *' resided. He was in a fearful state of 
delirium tremens ; and having been refused a further 
supply of liquor, he took out a pistol, and shot the " unfor- 
tunate,'* lodging two bullets in her body. He was seized, 
and the woman was conveyed to Mercer's Hospital, which 
was in the immediate vicinity. Her wounds did not prove 
mortal, the balls were extracted ; but whilst her recovery 
was uncertain, I went several times to the hospital for the 
purpose of taking her informations. She never expressed 
any resentment against her assailant, and she refused to 
prosecute him. Some of his family and friends contri- 
buted about £20, which sum was paid to her a few days 
before she was discharged, and she appropriated it to de- 
fray the expenses of her emigration. I was informed by 
the attendants that she often spoke of the lucky shot, by 
which she was enabled to quit a course of sin and degra- 
dation, and to essay a new life in a new land. This oc- 
curred, I think, in the year 1843. 

O'ConnelL 1C9 





In 1844 there was the most intense excitement amongst 
all classes, sects, and parties of the Irish community, aris- 
ing from the prosecutions instituted by the Attorney- 
Genera], Thomas Berry Cusack Smith against O'Connell 
and several others for various alleged violations of the 
laws in their meetings, publications and other proceed- 
ings adopted by them to promote a repeal of the Union. 
The preliminary informations were sworn before a judge, 
and none of the police magistrates were called upon to 
interfere, in any way whatever, from the commencement 
to the conclusion of the affair. On the 30th of May, the 
accused were sentenced to certain terms of imprisonments 
and fines, and they were liberated on the reversal of the 
judgment by the House of Lords, on the 6th September. 
A ifdw days before the sentence was pronounced, I dined 
in company with Mr. John O'Connell, when he stated that 
they expected to be sent to Newgate or Kilmainham. I 
advised him to have a special application made to the 
court to order the imprisonment in the Richmond Bride- 
well, which was cleanly and spacious, and where they 
might have access to two extensive gardens. My sugges- 
tion was adopted, and the prisoners were sent by a cir- 
cuitous route, avoiding the great thoroughfares of the city, 
to the bridewell. In the evening I was going home to 
my residence in Rathmines, when I overheard a woman 
loudly expressing to a number of sympathetic listeners, 
her hearty detestation and curse upon all '* who had any 
hand in sending the Liberator to the same place as that to 
which Porter sends his blackguards,^' 

Thomas Berry Cusack Smith, the Attorney-General, 
had been nicknamed, " Alphabet Smith," from the multi- 
plicity of his names, and when the judgment of the 
Queen's Bench was reversed, a ballad appeared to the 
tune of " The Shan van vocht," A po\\civi\ii^^^cX.CkY ^^'^'^ 

170 Twenty Yeari Recollections. 

my opinion as to the prevention of it being chanted by i 
street vocalists, and I advised Jiim against making it m( 
Isnown a.nd more relished by the multitude, as it would 
by his interference. It is as follows : — 

"Musha, Dan, who let you out? 

Says the T. B. C. 
For you 're here beyant a doubt, 

Says the T. B, C. 
Sure I thought I locked you in, 
You contrariest of min, 
And what bringrs you here agin ? 

Says the T. B. C. 

Through the chimney did you climb? 

Says the T. B. C. 
For you 're up to any crime, 

Says the T. B. C. 
There were locks both great and small, 
Did you dare to pick them all ? 
Did you scale the prison wall ? 

Says the T. B. C. 

No, I didn't scale the wall, 

Says the Dan van vocht, 
Through the flues I didn *t crawl. 

Says the Dan van vocht, 
Not a weapon did I take, 
Aud no lock I tried to break, 
Such attempts I 'd scorn to make. 

Says the Dan van vocht. 

But might is foiled by right, 

Savs the Dan van vocht, 
As the darkness by the light, 

Says the Dan van vocht, 
My cause was on a rock, 
'Twas the law that picked the lock, 
And I 'm free, my bantam cock, 
Says the l3an van vocht. 

Oh ! confusion to you Dan, 

Says the T. B. C. 
You 're a divil of a man, 

Savs the T. B. C. 
And we 're in a precious plight 
By your means this very night. 
For you 've bothered us outright. 

Says the T. B.C:' 

O'ConneU. 171 

During the progress of the prosecution against the 
repealers, Tom Steele, who was one of those indicted, 
interrupted the proceedings several times, audibly contra- 
dicting some expressions of the Attorney-General, and 
annoying him by exclamations and gestures. Tom prided 
himself on being considered the Jldus Achates of O'Connell, 
and was never so happy as when closely associated with 
his political leader. It was said, and I believe it was 
perfectly true, that Smith succeeded in quieting Tom, by 
intimating that if he continued to exclaim and gesticulate, 
his name should be struck out of the indictment, and his 
chnnce of participating in the expected martrydom thereby 

Whilst O'Connell and the other state prisoners were in 
the Richmond Bridewell, they received a continual supply 
of the choicest provisions and wine sent as presents by 
their political adherents. It would be very difficult to 
particularise any article suited to a luxurious repast, 
which was not tendered for their enjoyment. I was twice 
at the prison, on magisterial business, during their deten- 
tion, and on each occasion 1 saw materials tit for princely 
banquets brought for their use. I was rather surprised 
at one contribution which very soon disappeared. It was 
half a ton of ice, and it did not preserve its consistency, 
beyond a few hours. I heard from some of the prison 
officials that O'ConnelFs meals were generally simple in 
their material, but that his appetite was healthy and 
strong. When released from confinement, he did not ap- 
pear to have been weakened by its infliction. 

It would not be in accordance with the objects of my 
reminiscences to advocate or condemn the political opi- 
nions or proceedings of any portion of the community, 
unless they involved direct incitements to, or the actual 
adoption of, open violence. In noticing O'Connell as a 
remarkable public chariicter, I may express my convic- 
tion that he had a decided repugnance, even in the hottest 
times of political excitement, to the application of actual 
force. It may be said that he could " speak daggers," 
but he was disposed to ^' use none." 

172 Twenty Yeari Eecollections. 

Whenever I had an opportunity to hear him, whether 
on legal or political occasions, I availed myself of it, in 
the anticipation of being highly amused, and I was scarcely 
ever disappointed. I am tempted to detail two or three 
of my recollections, which have not been noticed by any 
of his biographers. I am aware that my expressions 
must be far inferior to his diction, but my readers will 
not, I hope, be too severe in criticising my inefficiency. 

I was present at the trial of a very beautiful young 
lady who, with her mother and two other persons, was 
indicted for conspiring to take away a minor from his 
parents, and have him married to the young lady in Scot- 
land. The prosecution was conducted with considerable 
acrimony, and the Gretna-Green bride was described as 
a person of very tarnished reputation, whose favorite para- 
mour had been a blacksmith. No proofs were adduced of 
the imputed immorality, and O'Connell, in a speech for 
the defence, denounced it as a fabrication " which had 
not even the merit of originality, but was borrowed from 
the mythological assignment of Vulca?i to Venus." 

At the commencement of the first viceroyalty of the 
Marquis Wellesley, a newspaper was started in Parlia- 
ment Street by a Mr. Hay den. It was called The Morn- 
ing Star, and its editorial articles were almost exclusively 
devoted to the most disparaging and insulting produc- 
tions in reference to the Lord Lieutenant or O'Connell. 
The latter was never forgotten ; and every term of 
obloquy was put in requisition for his diurnal vilification. 
Firebrand, Rebel, Arch-mendicant, Liar, Impostor, 
Schemer, were liberally appropriated to him, and even 
the shape of his hat, and the mode of carrying his um- 
brella, became subjects of ofiensive observation. The 
attention of the Attorney-General was attracted to an 
article in The Morning Star, headed " The profligate Lord 
Wharton," the writer of which stated that the history 
of the Wharton viceroyalty had never been fully published, 
because a true description of such a character would be 
considered as an incredible exaggeration, but that it 
might now be produced without anj iv^^rttheuaioa of such 

O'Connell, 173 

an o]nnion prevailing, inasmuch as its worst details would 
be found fully equalled in Dublin Castle under thd 
auspices of its present occupant. A criminal information 
WHS filed against Mr. Hayden for a libel on the Lord! 
Lieutenant ; and he became extremely apprehensive of a 
severe punishment, resulting from his very offensive 
comparison of Lord Wellesley with Lord Wharton. Hei 
immediately engaged William Ford as his attorney, and 
the next step was to retain O'Connell as his principal 
counsel. The latter agreed to act, but required that he 
should be left completely free to adopt whatever line of 
defence be preferred, and to manage the case at his own 
discretion. The trial was held in the King's Bench be-i 
fore Bushe, the Chief Justice, and the opening state** 
ment for the prosecution was delivered by the Attorney- 
General, Plunket. Sir Charles Vernon, who held the 
appointment of register of newspapers, was the first 
witness ; and he produced the official copy of the paper 
containing the alleged libel, and it was read by him for 
the court and jury. O'Connell was then at the outer bar^ 
and occupied a seat on its front row. He submitted to 
the judge, that when a document was given in evidence, 
either party could insist on the entire of it being read. 
To this proposition the Chief Justice acceded, expressing 
a hope, however, that his time would not be wasted in 
listening to irrelevant matter. O'Connell then required 
Sir Charles to read sundry portions of the paper in 
which " a person named O'Connell " was made the subject 
of the most defamatory animadversions. The entire au- 
ditory were convulsed with laughter, as he gravely pro- 
ceeded to elicit ardent wishes for the speedy hanging or 
transportation of the arch- agitator, the apostle of mischief, 
the disseminator of disaffection, the mendicant patriot, 
the disgrace to his profession, and the curse of his country. 
When the case for the prosecution closed, he proceeded 
to address the jury, and his speech was replete with the 
highest enconiums on the Marquis Wellesley, to whose 
Indian government and diplomatic services he referred as 
exhibiting all the qualities of perfect &^sQi^Ti^\iv^. ^€ks^. 

174 Twenty Yeari liecoliections, 

then expressed his surprise at the Attorney -General con- 
descending to notice the publication of a mere newspaper 
squib, which could not possibly affect the illustrious 
viceroy. In the paper produced there were several un* 
warrantable attacks upon some person named O'Connell, 
who had instituted no proceedings against their publisher, 
although, perhaps, he was very likely to be affected 
injuriously by them, especially if his livelihood depended 
upon his character and reputation. Bitterly as he had been 
assailed, he had remained quiescent, and so regardless of 
the invectives directed against him, that it was very pro- 
bable he had no desire whatever to mulct or incarcerate 
his assailant, but would rather aid in terminating his 
anxieties, and sending him home to his icife and Jive 

At the conclusion of his speech O'Connell left the 
court. I had been sitting very near him, and went out 
at the same time. Ford was in the vestibule, and when 
they met, O'Connell said, '* Ford, I hope that I did not 
make a wrong cast in my closing sentence ; is the fellow 
married f " 

Hay den was not convicted, the jury disagreed, and the 
prosecution was not renewed. The publication of '* The 
Morning Star " was almost immediately discontinued. 

In 1834, the question of Repeal of the Union was in- 
troduced by O'Connell to the House of Commons, and 
negatived by an overwhelming majority. The principal 
opponent of the motion was Thomas Spring Rice (after* 
wards Lord Monteagle) who was then one of the members 
for Limerick city, and a very general opinion was imme- 
diately entertained that he would never be elected there 
on any future occasion. In the autumn of 1834, I was 
appointed a revising barrister in reference to tithes, and in 
that capacity I visited Limerick. I had finished my busi- 
ness, and was preparing for my departure, when about 
two o'clock in the afternoon, O'Connell arrived at the 
hotel (which was, I think, Cruise's), and the street was 
immediately thronged to excess by an enthusiastic multi- 
tude. He waa on his way to B\i\)\ixv\ "Wx. N<Vv^\.\i«t he 

a Cornell. 175 

wished to address the people or not, it was manifest that a 
speech from the balcony was unavoidable. I got as near 
to him as the crowded state of the apartment permitted, 
and was enabled to hear his oration fully ; but of course I 
cannot do more than give its general import, and endea- 
vour to describe its effect. He commenced by stating that 
a report had been circulated that he intended to interfere 
with the people of Limerick, and to direct, and even to 
ddctcUe^ the choice of their Parliamentary representatives. 
This rumour he denounced as a scandalous, infamous lie. 
He had no wish to curb or trammel them in the exercise 
of their rights, and he was not such a fool as to attempt 
dictation to a community too independent and intelligent 
to yield to any influence except dispassionate arguments 
suggested by patriotism and conducive to the welfare of 
their beloved country. Freqtient and rapturous cheers 
from listening thousands evinced their appreciation of his 
address, especially when he referred to the valorous defence 
of their city by their forefathers. At length he said that 
his topics were exhausted, and that he had nothing to add 
unless they wished him to tell them a little story. Shouts 
were immediately raised for " the story, the story," and he 
proceeded to narrate that about the beginning of the pre- 
sent century an opinion was very prevalent that the French 
intended to invade Ireland, and it was considered probable 
that their fleet would enter the Shannon, and land the 
troops on the left side of that splendid river, in the vicinity 
of Limerick. The French had exacted such heavy contri- 
butions from the continental states which they had occu- 
pied, that very great apprehensions were entertained that 
their invasion of Ireland would be attended with similar 
results, and that the industrial resources of the country 
and the savings of the people would be speedily spoliated. 
There then lived near Foynes a farmer named Maurice 
Sullivan, a man of excellent character, religious, sober, 
thrifty, industrious, and intelligent. He had a loved and 
loving wife, comely and amiable, who made his home 
happy by the observance of every domestic duty. On a 
Sundlay morning, they were returning from Mass^ axvd 

176 Twenty Yeari EecoUections, 

were chatting as to the probability of the French coming 
over. He said that they would ruin thousands who were 
then comfortable and contented, and that they would help 
themselves to everything they fancied. " I have now," he 
added, " to tell you, my dear Jenny, that I have more mOne^ 
than you knew of. I have had good crops, and the cattle 
and sheep have thriven well and fetched high prices, and i 
have laid by close on eight hundred pounds. If a French- 
man came across my savings, he would not ask leave or 
licence, but plunder me at once." 

" Maurice," replied his wife, " I must acknowledge to 
you that I have put by more than one hundred pounds 
that I made from time to time by the poultry and eggi 
and early vegetables. Now that we have made a cleat 
breast to each other, what course shall we take to keep 
the money safe ?" 

" Well," said he, " I was down, a few evenings ago, in 
the old churchyard, and noticed a hole at the comer of thtf 
big monument belonging to the Rice family. I think i! 
I got a strong canister or jar, and packed the money in it) 
and hid it under the monument, closing up the hole com- 
pletely, nobody would ever think of ransacking such a 
place as that, or suppose that it contained anything 

" Maurice," replied Jenny, " it was a cute notion of 
yours, and I am sure that no Frenchman would ever go 
to root out your canister, but still with my consent not 
even a farthing shall ever be put there." 

" Why, what is your objection ? " said her husband. 

"My objection is very simple," answered Jenny ; "do 
anything else that you please, but not that, for I wouldnH 
trust a Rice living or dead" 

The "little story" was vehemently cheered, and its 
concluding words became a political maxim amongst the 
repealers of Limerick. Rice had no longer a chance of 
election there, but he was returned at the next dissolution 
for an English borough, I believe for Cambridge. The 
"little story" appeared to me rather an extraordinary 
sequel to the disavowal of any deaix^ to interfere, to 
direct, or to dictate. 

CConndl 111 

In some recent publications I have seen it stated that 
O'Connell achieved a complete triumph over an inveterate 
termagant named Biddy Moriartj, whose quickness and 
copiousness of abusive diction deterred all others from, 
engaging her in any wordy warfare. His success was 
ascribed to the application of mathematical terms to his 
vituperative antagonist, who became completely bewildered 
at finding herself designated a detested parallelogram, a 
notorious hypothenuse, an octagonal diagram, of rectan- 
gular habits and rhomboidal practices. I do not believe 
that he ever came in collision with the redoubtable Biddy, 
for the tale of her discomfiture was very rife before 
O'Connell had attained to great eminence, either politically 
or professionally, and I have heard it told in the year 1817 
in the presence of Curran, who was mentioned as her 
successful antagonist, and complimented on the effective 
means he adopted to overcome the incorrigible scold ; and 
I recollect hearing him state that the encounter took place 
at Rathcormack, in the County Cork. He added, that 
having declared, towards the conclusion of the verbose 
strife, that he could never condescend again to notice such 
** an individual," the exasperated woman replied that he 
had a power of impudence to say the like, for that she 
was no more an andyvigal than he was himself. 

In reference to O'Connell, I have a very distinct re- 
collection that in 1837-38 he took a prominent part in 
opposing combinations amongst the working tradesmen 
of Dublin. He attended public meetings, and spoke of 
the evils arising from combinations or trade- strikes in the 
strongest terms. Hostility, amounting to threats of per- 
sonal violence, was displayed towards him by some of 
those to whose opinions and proceedings he was adverse. 
I have heard Joseph Denis Mullen state that he suggested 
to O'Connell that the course adopted by him might 
endanger his popularity, to which he replied :— 

"When my popularity depends on the surrender or 
compromise of my conscientious convictions, I shall not 
seek to retain it." It was in reference to his conduct at 
that time that the late Lord Charlemonl) \<\veti Y^^'i\^\!i.'^ 

17^ Twenty Years' Recollections. 

at a public banquet to the metropolitan members, of whom 
O'Counell was one, and proposing the toast of the evening, 
applied a very appropriate quotation, derived from classic 
knowledge and suggested by classic taste — 

** Justom, et tenacem propositi viram 
Non civ turn ardor prava jubentium ; 
Non vultus instantis tyranni 
Mente quatit sollda." — * 

In April, 1835, I had occasion to visit London, and, 
during a sojourn of about three weeks, I spent sevel^l 
evenings in the gallery of the House of Commons. There 
had been a recent change of ministry, and the Melbourne 
cabinet was formed. In the preceding Government Lord 
Ashley had been a Lord of the Admiralty, and at the tim^ 
to which I refer, a sergeant-at-law, named Spankey, had 
been returned, on the liberal interest, for a metropolitan 
constituency, I believe Finsbury. I happened to be iA 
the gallery one evening when there was not a member of 
the administration present, and the opposition benches 
were also unoccupied by any of the leading conservatives. 
There was no probability of any interesting discussioii 
arising, and the secretary of the admiralty was engaged ilk 
moving the navy estimates to which he did not appear it 
apprehend any objection, as they had been framed at a 
considerable reduction of the preceding amounts. I waa 
about to retire from the gallery, when Lord Ashley arose, 
and denounced the proposed votes as having originated in 
a spirit of parsimony, and as tending to impair the most 
important element of our national strength. Having 
delivered a speech, in which the greatest ignorance of 
their duties, and a most culpable neglect of our naval 
requirements were imputed to the Government ; he was 
followed by Sergeant Spankey, who manifested the utmost 
hostility to the administration, and declared it to be 

* The man of firm and righteoas will, 
No rabble clamorous for the wrong. 
No tyrant's brow, whose frown may kill. 
Can shake the stttngth that maked hita strong. 

Smith O'Brien and Meagher. 179 

unworthy of public confidence or respect. To the surprise 
of all present, O'Connell arose and expressed his opinion 
that the estimates had been judiciously framed, and that 
the Government had evinced a laudable desire to econo- 
mize the national expenses. He proceeded to say that he 
was not astonished at the hostility of the noble lord 
towards an administration by which he had been deprived 
of power and the sweets concomitant to power ; but he 
was unable to comprehend the motives, or even to imagine 
the reasons, for the asperity and unmitigated hostility of 
the honorable and learned member, from whom the 
Government had not taken any power or official advan- 
tages, and to whom, it was believed, that they had offered 
kisfull value. 

" Sir," exclaimed Spankey, ** they offered me nothing.** 

" Mr. Speaker," said O'Connell, " that is exactly what 
I surmised." 

Laup^hter, loud and of long continuance, followed this 
uncomplimentary explanation of the Sergeant's worth, 
and I believe that " Spankey's price" was for some time 
adapted as a term to signify a total deficiency of value. 

Having detailed these few personal recollections, which 
I hope may not be considered too discursive, I have to ap- 
proach the incidents of 1848, when the "Young Ireland" 
or "Confederate" movement occurred. It is not my 
intention to laud or censure those engaged in its further- 
ance or its repression, my only object being to state such 
facts as came under my personal observations, or of which 
I had official cognizance, leaving to the reader to derive 
amusement from some circumstances and useful informa- 
tion from others. I think it was on the 21st day of March 
that the crown-solicitor preferred charges of sedition against 
Smith O'Brien and Meagher, and required me to make 
them amenable. When the informations were sworn, I 
asked him if he had any objection to an intimation from 
me to the accused, that such proceedings had been insti- 
tuted, in order that they might appear and give bail to 
stand their trial without subjecting them to the indignity 
of arrest. To this course Mr. Kemmis at ouc^ &c<Mded\ 

180 Twenty Year^ Recollections, 

and I called on Smith O'Brien at his lodgings in Westland 
Row that evening, and found Meagher and several other 
persons along with him. When 1 stated the object of 
my visit, one of the company exclaimed, " Give no promise 
or undertaking to appear. Accept no courtesy from your 
prosecutors, but let the Government incur the odium of 
arresting you/* Both of them, however, declined to follow 
such advice, and assured me that they would attend at 
the Head Office, at noon, on the next day. They thanked 
me for the inclination I had exhibited to save them, as 
much as possible, from personal annoyance ; and as I was 
leaving, O'Brien laughingly exclaimed, ^'Your urbanity, 
Mr. Porter, shall not be forgotten ; and when the govern- 
ment of Ireland comes into our hands, your official posi- 
tion shall not be disturbed." At the appointed time they 
gave the required bail, and I returned the informations for 
trial. They were indicted for sedition, and, unfortunately 
for themselves, were acquitted. I say "unfortunately," 
because if they had then been convicted, and imprisoned 
for three or four months, they would have been imable to 
engage in the proceedings which eventuated in their con- 
viction for high treason, at Clonmel, in the following 
September. 1 think it worth remarking, that when they 
had utterly failed in their insurrectionary designs, and had 
been banished to a distant region, I occasionally heard 
great culpability and folly imputed to them ; but in refe- 
rence to their conduct, the most severe censures were 
uttered by the lips of him who had urged them to reject 
the slight courtesy and the forbearance of arrest, to which 
I have alluded above. 

In all the cases of treason-felony which were tried in 
Dublin, the informations were sworn before me. I had 
also to issue warrants for the apprehension of the principal 
organizers of Confederate clubs, and search-warrants for 
concealed arms. Such transactions were numerous, and 
the period was one of very fervid excitement. I am 
therefore proud of being able to declare that no imputa- 
tion of partiality, precipitance, or undue severity was pre- 
ferred or suggested in reference to m^ ma^v&xioi conduct. 

John MitcheU. 181 

There were several instances in which I refrained from 
issuing warrants on the evidence of constables or of private 
informers ; but in all such cases the higher authorities 
were made acquainted with the peculiar circumstances 
under which further proceedings appeared to be unneces- 
sary or inadvisable, and approved of the forbearance. If 
a person was known to have joined a Confederate club, or 
to have made seditious speeches, or to have subscribed 
to a fund for the purchase of arms, or to have attended 
meetings for drilling and training ; and if it was also 
known that he had relinquished such associations and 
practices, and especially if he was desirous of leaving the 
country, there was no anxiety to prosecute him or delay 
his departure. 


The most important case tried in Dublin was that of 
John Mitchell, for treason-felony, grounded on his pub- 
lications in Thi United Irishman newspaper. He had been 
committed by me, and on the 27th May he was convicted 
and sentenced to transportation for fourteen years. The 
only relic of the period in my possession is his *' pattern 
pike," which was found in his house when the police 
seized the premises. On the day of his condemnation, 
I was passing along Capel Street on an outside hackney 
jaunting-car. At Mary's Abbey corner I was recognized 
by a crowd of roughs, and saluted with a volley of stones. 
Not one of the missiles struck me, but the carman received 
a blow on the point of his left elbow which caused intense 
pain, and elicited copious maledictions. Police were close 
at hand, and protected me from further aggression. I 
suggested to the driver that the stone was not intended 
for him, to which he replied — " It hurt me all the same. 
Them vagabones should'nt throw stones without knowing 
who they'd hit.'' 



No more oflPensive epithet can be applied in thl^ cowxsl"rj^ 
the warmest spirit of invectiye^ tViaii l\iaX o^ «xv^tA\&^'v. 

182 Iwenty Ytari EecoUections. 

mer." I have repeatedly heard it asserted as a popular 
maxim, that all informers should be shot. I can truly 
and deliberately declare it to be my firm conviction, that 
if all the informers of 1848 were so disposed of, the Con- 
federate clubs and revolutionary associations of Dublin 
vrouid have been decimated. There were in one great 
commercial establishment forty Confederates, of whom 
ten were in communication with the police. I resided at 
Boundtown, and I would often have preferred walking into 
town or strolling homeward, when I had to take a seat on 
a hackney car or in an omnibus to avoid a request to step 
into Blackberry Lane or turn up the Barrack Avenue, and 
listen to details of proceedings of which it is highly pro- 
bable I had been already fully apprised. 

A smith, in a town between thirty and forty miles from 
Dublin, was engaged to manufacture pikes. He made 
two hundred and eighty pike-heads, and brought them, ac- 
cording to directions which he had received, to a place, the 
designation of which was peculiarly appropriate for the re- 
ception of such articles, for it was the slaughter-house of a 
butcher. They were of the best quality, in respect of mate- 
rials and workmanship. The industrious tradesman de- 
livered the ** goods " to his customer, and was paid fully 
and promptly. He then made me acquainted with the 
transa.ction, and I referred him to the Commissioners of 
Police. They entrusted its management, or perhaps I 
might more correctly say its mismanagement, to a superin- 
tendent who, instead of having the premises closely 
watched, proceeded precipitately to seize the weapons* 
They were packed in strong deal cases, of the contents of 
which the butcher and his assistants declared that they 
had no knowledge. Before the Executive came to any 
conclusion as to what course Vas to be adopted, the hopes 
of the revolutionists had been extinguished at Ballingarry. 
No prosecution was instituted, and the pike-heads were 
sent to England where, I believe, they were transferred to 
the naval department. 

The Close of 1848. 183 


On the 18th July, 1848, Dublin was proclaimed under 
the Crime and Outrage Act, and a bill was introduced 
about the same time for suspending the Habeas Corpus 
Act. When the Government adopted these measures, 
several of the clubs came to the conclusion that it would 
be advisable to dissolve. In almost every instance the 
police authorities were fully informed of such proceedings, 
and some of the persons, to whom the books and trans- 
actions were entrusted, made us acquainted with their 
contents. The Government was extremely anxious to 
prevent the formation of revolutionary associations in the 
provinces; but as soon as the insurrectionary attempt 
of Smith O'Brien collapsed, the executive became less 
desirous of exercising severity. It was considered neces- 
Fary to offer £500 reward for the apprehension of O'Brien, 
and £300 for the capture of each of his principal asso- 
ciates ; but / know that the news of their arrival in a 
foreign land would have been more welcome in Dublin 
Castle than the intelligence of their arrest. 

The authorities were aware that at a certain place in 
Sandymount, a suburb of Dublin, nightly meetings were 
held by some young men who had been engaged in the 
Confederate movement, for the purpose of consulting on 
the most feasible mode of leaving the country, and pro- 
viding the requisite expenses for their departure. There 
was not the slightest inclination to balk their wishes or 
impede their progress. Some of them have attained 
wealthy and important positions in distant lands, and 
some have returned home, where they may spend their 
remaining days, undisturbed and undisturbing. 

During the first six or seven months of 1848, the 
superior officers of regiments in Dublin made frequent 
communications respecting the assiduous exertions of the 
disaffected to sap the loyalty of the soldiery, and effect an 
introduction of the military element to their fraternity. 
Much time and money were applied to this ^\vr^o^^\ \svi5s.«> 

184 Twenty Years* Recollections, 

although the sobriety of the soldier was frequently im- 
paired, his loyalty remained intact, and his usual apology 
for an unsteady step, or for returning late to his quarters, 
ascribed the fault to " the bloody rebels/' '* They had made 
him drink a great lot of bad toasts, and he wouldn't have 
done so for them, if the whiskey had not been very good." 
The only instance of disaffection found to exist in a mili- 
tary body was amongst the Royal Artillery at Portobello 
barrack. An Irishman who had enlisted in London, in 
1846, under a false name, induced thirteen of his comrades 
to join him in forming a Confederate association. Their 
usual place of meeting was very near to my residence at 
Roundtown ; and the first information which I received 
concerning them arose from the resentment of a woman. 
I had some communication with Colonel Gordon, the 
Adjutant-general of the Ordnance, and we were both 
inclined to disbelieve the statement which I had received. 
Eventually, however, we became satisfied of its truth, and 
acquired such additional evidence as to render the case 
sufficiently strong to procure a conviction of all the delin- 
quents by a court-martial. I earnestly advised Colonel 
Gordon to leave them unprosecuted, but to disperse them. 
He adopted my views, and in a few days not one of the 
fourteen was in Ireland, neither were any two sent to the 
same station. In 1861, I saw the principal offender at 
Gibraltar. He was then a sergeant. 

The abortive attempt at revolution in 1848 was decidedly 
obstructive to the progress of all the industrial pursuits 
which conduce to the prosperity of a country and the 
comforts of a community. It also involved the expendi- 
ture of vast sums in maintaining military forces, aug- 
mented police and constabulary, and defraying the expenses 
of special commissions. There is only one agreeable 
recollection afforded by it. Neither side shed blood. 
Popular violence inflicted no mortal injury, and no victim 
was demanded by the ultimate restoration of Law and 
Order. I am now disposed to lay before my readers a 
short extract from a French author (Le Comte de Melun), 
in reference to insurrectionary moN'em^xvX.^. Ix. \^ ^xq\xv hia 

The Close of 1848. 185 

>' Life of Sister Rosalie, the Superioress of the Order of 
CQiarity." A work crowned by the French Academy. 

*' In the ranks of society against which they appear to 
be more specially directed, insurrections and revolutions 
Suspend profit, diminish revenue, compel a restriction of 
outlay, and introduce disquietude and torment where secu- 
rity and abundance previously prevailed. But their con- 
sequences are far more afflicting and grievous upon those 
who live with great difficulty upon the labor of each day. 
The least commotion in the street stops the work, and of 
course the wages. It changes the difficulties of life into 
the deepest misery. 

** Whatever may be the issue of the movements for 
which their aid is bespoken, the people are always the 
dupes and victims of these sanguinary comedies. Whilst 
many of those who speak in their name, who push them 
on to the conflict, who breathe into their ears the senti- 
ments of revolution, conceal themselves during the combat, 
escape the consequences of defeat, and are always fore- 
most tQ adjudge to themselves the advantages of success ; 
the wretched people are exposed to blows on the field of 
battle, to prison or exile in case of defeat, to the diminu- 
tion of employment, and thereby to an abridgment of 
their resources if they are conquerors — for it requires 
much time, after a successful revolution, to restore secu- 
rity to capital, activity to commerce, its proper balance to 
society ; and the workman has not, as an inducement to 
patience, like the heads of parties, portfolios, important 
situations, and a share in the budget. Then, after having 
suffered much, and waited long for the day of compensa- 
tion, the mere individual does not see it arrive, and re- 
mains as he was previously — a workman, when he does not 
become a pauper.'* 

186 Twevty Years^ Recollections* 



Leaving to my readers, without any comment from my- 
self, the consideration of the statements and sentiments 
contained in the extracts from the French author, I pass 
to the year 1849, which certainly afforded a most agreea* 
ble contrast to its immediate predecessor in the almost 
total cessation of political agitations and asperities. The 
onlj^ regrettable circumstance to which my recollections 
of the latter year can revert being the appearance of 
cholera in Dublin, early in April, and its continuance, 
with intermitting violence, until October. It was far less 
prevalent than it had been in 1832, and, in almost every 
instance, the disease was ascribed to the use of fish, fruit, 
acid drinks, or habitual intemperance. In the great majo- 
rity of cases ardent spirits were administered ; and the 
police were frequently complained to by officers of health 
and other sanitary officials who had been called on to 
relieve pretended sufferings, in the expectation of brandy 
or whisky being promptly afforded. Occasionally, on be- 
ing refused the coveted dram, the mock sufferer became 
at once invigorated, and addressed abusive language and 
threats of personal violence to " the cholera fellow." Some 
instances of opprobrious and menacing expressions were 
brought by summons under my cognizance, and for such 
I prescribed a month's sojourn in the Richmond Bride- 
well, unless the delinquent found two good and substantial 
sureties for his good behaviour. One of these summonses 
was reported, I believe by Mr. Dunphy, in the FreemarCa 
Journal, It was described as **an affair in which a 
patient became impatient, because he was not stimulated 
when he simulated^*' 

Royal Visits. 187 

My residence at Roundtown was not far from a range 
of small cottages occupied by the laboring class. One of 
our female servants alarmed my family by stating that 
the cholera was very nigh, for that she had seen five poor 
people taken off to hospital from the cottages near the 
quarry. I mentioned her statement to a police sergeant, 
and requested him to enquire if it was correct. In about 
half an hour, he returned and said, ** Your worship, I 
have good news for you. The cholera has not come near 
you : it is only the typhus fever." 


In 1849, Dublin had the honor of a Royal visit, which 
was regarded by all classes as a most gratifying event. 
On the 5th of August, her Majesty Queen Victoria 
arrived in Kingstown Harbour, accompanied by Prince 
Albert, the Prince of Wales, the Princess Royal, Prince 
Alfred, and the Princess Alice. The Victoria and Albert 
yacht was escorted by ten war steamers, and the squadron 
anchored about eight o'clock in the evening. The Queen 
made a public entry into Dublin on the following day, 
and remained in Ireland until the 10th. Having a perfect 
recollection of George the Fourth's visit in 1821, I pre- 
sume to say that the reception of Victoria was most re- 
spectful and cordial, and did not indicate the slightest 
approach to sycophantic adulation. I would not apply 
the same terms in describing the popular demonstrations 
which her uncle's visit produced ; for if ever a community 
manifested unanimous servility and insane enthusiasm, it 
was when his Irish subjects accorded to George the Fourth 
a homage almost idolatrous. Both visits occurred in the 
8ame month, but with an interval of twenty-ei^ht years. 
I hope that I shall not be deemed too discursive in men^ 
tioning that the King was received by the municipal 
authorities, with the usual ceremonies, at the northern 
end of Upper Sackville Street, where a gate had been 
cuustructea for his admission ; and over t>l\^ <&TL\,^t\i*d^. ^^^ 

188 Twenty Tears* Recollections, 

there appeared a very conspicuous inscription, derived 
from the sixth book of Virgil's -^neid — 

^* Hie vir, hie est, tibi qaem promitti saepios andis, 
Augustas." * 

The meaning of this quotation did not seem a difficult 
attainment, even to those who had never previously seen 
a Latin word. It was generally construed by such persons, 
** Here he is ; it is all right ; he has come, as he promised, 
in August." 

It was during the King's sojourn at the Viceregal Lodge 
in the Phoenix Park, that an anecdote became current of 
a question having been addressed by him to an Iiish foot- 
man as to v/hether there was any person in the establish- 
ment who understood German ? to which the interrogated 
domestic replied, " Please your Majesty, I don't know 
anyone who spakes Jarman, but I have a brother who 
plays the Jarman flute." 

In 1849, when it became known that Queen Victoria 
would visit Dublin, a great influx of the nobility and gen- 
try was reasonably expected. The city became also very 
attractive to persons of a different and objectionable de- 
scription. Great numbers of mendicants arrived, and the 
increase of beggars on our streets became most disagree- 
ably apparent. The Commissioners of Police immediately 
told off constables in plain clothes on the special duty of 
repressing the nuisance, and so vigilant and active were 
they, that our thoroughfares were less infested by beg- 
gars during the Royal visit than I ever knew them to be 
at any other period. The committals were generally for 
ten or fourteen days ; and many of the vagrants were by 
no means slow in attributing their confinement to special 
orders from the Queen herself to have the beggars locked 
up while she was in Dublin. A woman, who was com- 
mitted by me for a fortnight on a conviction for mendi- 
cancy, exclaimed, as she was leaving the police-court, 

* Here is the man ; here you may now behold 
August-US, promised oit, aud \ow^ iv)v«i\.o\v\. 

Scotch Superiority strongly asserted. 189 

.** Mr. Porter is sending us to jail in hopes of getting him- 
self made Sir Frank," 

During the Queen's progress through the city on the 
6th of August, the whole line of the procession was 
densely crowded, the windows were occupied, and banners, 
emblematic of respect and welcome, abundantly displayed ; 
and she was universally hailed with enthusiastic shouts 
of applause. In the evening there was a general and 
most brilliant illumination. The whole day passed without 
the slightest tumult or accident, until about eleven o'clock 
at night, when the vast crowds were dispersed by the 
heaviest rain that I ever witnessed in Ireland. The shower 
lasted about an hour. During the succeeding four days, 
Her Majesty visited the principal public institutions, and 
held a levee in Dublin Castle, the most numerous and 
influential that had ever been assembled there, and a 
drawing-room which exhibited an unprecedented display 
of rank, fashion, and beauty. On the 10th of August, 
she embarked at Kingstown, amidst the acclamations of 
assembled thousands, and sailed for England, She afforded 
signal acknowledgments of her appreciation of the recep- 
tion she had experienced from her Irish subjects, for on 
leaving the pier at Kingstown, she ordered the Royal 
standard to be lowered and raised again on board the 
Boyal yacht, a mark of honor never before employed 
except for a Royal personage. In a short time after her 
yisit of 1849, she created her eldest son Earl of Dublin. 


Several months elapsed after the exciting and gratify- 
ing demonstrations to which I have last adverted, during 
which time we had profound quietude, and a total cessa- 
tion of political turmoils. I cannot recollect any incident, 
public or official, which I would consider worth a reader's 
notice. I shall mention, however, that there was then 
here an individual character with whom I had occasional 
communication, and from whom I derived considerable 
amusement almost every time we met. H.e \49i& ^ xci^^i ^^ 

190 Tiventij Years' Recollections, 

high military rank, holding an important garrison appoint- 
ment. Kind, courteous, and affable, he had, nevertheless, 
some extraordinary prejudices, which I took every oppor- 
tunity to induce him to express. He was a Scotchman, 
who insisted that his country and its people were superior 
to every other region and race, and who did not hesitate 
to disparage any attempt to assign even an equality with 
the Scotch to the natives of any other kingdom. His 
greatest explosions of indignation seemed specially re- 
served for a comparison, if at all favourable, of the Irish 
with the Scotch. Consequently, I boldly ascribed a 
manifest superiority to my countrymen over his in intelli- 
gence, integrity, diligence, neatness, promptitude of action, 
and all other estimable qualities which could be evinced 
in either peaceful or martial avocations ; so that I was 
sure to produce a denial of all my statements, and a 
suggestion that I should never repeat them without 
blushing. Still I persevered, and enjoyed the excitement 
which my expressions elicited. A few days before he left 
Dublin we had a conference, and, as usual, I boasted of 
Burke, Grattan, Curran, Goldsmith, Moore, Sheridan, 
Wellington, Gough, &c. He insisted that Scotland could 
produce equal or perhaps superior characters, if she had 
the opportunity. I remarked that even when Irishmen 
engaged in nefarious criminal pursuits, they evinced 
superior dexterity, and that our thieves were peculiarly 
knowing and adroit. ** Your thieves ! " he exclaimed, 

*' I'll be d d if we haven't thieves in Edinburgh or 

Glasgow that your Dublin fellows couldn't hold a candle to.'* 


In the session of Parliament of 1850, a bill was brought 
in by the Government for the revision and consolidation 
of the acts regulating the Dublin Metropolitan Police. It 
was printed, and a considerable number of copies were 
circulated in Dublin. We regarded it as a most desirable 
measure, for it would, if passed, have substituted, a sim- 
p]i£ed code for an inyolved and complicated hotch-potch 

Leave of Absence, 191 

of s^Ten statutes containing about four hundred sections. 
The police authorities were extremely anxious for the suc- 
cess of the proposed bill, but it was objected to by others, 
delayed, and ultimately, at the close of the session, became 
one of the sufferers in the *' Massacre of the Innocents." 
Whilst it was pending, an alderman made it the subject, 
at a meeting of the Corporation, of a most condemnatory 
speech. He stigmatised it as unconstitutional and tyran- 
nical, and dwelt at considerable length on a section which 
would impart power to a divisional magistrate, in case 
dealers in certain commodities neglected or refused to 
comply with a notice to produce any article in their pos- 
session, alleged to have been stolen, to inflict on the person 
so neglecting or refusing, a penalty of twenty pounds^ and 
in default of payment of such penalty, to commit the 
offender for two months. He indignantly demanded from 
what region of despotism had such a tyrannical proposi- 
tion been imported, and declared that it would disgrace 
any legislature to enact, or any executive to enforce, such 
unconstitutional severity. He was spared the mortifica- 
tion of seeing such power imparted to a police magistrate. 
The obnoxious bill was not passed, and the law remained 
unaltered. )iy it the tyrannical penalty is only fifty pounds^ 
with an alternative imprisonment of merely six months, 
i do not believe, however, that there has ever been an 
instance of such a penalty being exacted or such imprison- 
ment inflicted. 


In the year 1851 my magisterial duties, which did not 
indeed afford any incident worthy of being particularized, 
were interrupted by a severe attack of gastric fever ; on 
my recovery from which, I was directed by my medical 
attendant to proceed to Wiesbaden, and take such baths 
and drink such mineral waters as should be prescribed by 
a certain English physician residing there, Dr. Lewis. I 
waited on the Chief Secretary, Sir William Somerville, 
who subsequently became Lord Athlumney, and requeisted 
leave of absence for a month ox six N^^\sa» '^^x.^^^ 

192 Twenty Tears* Recollections, 

printed form of reply, directed it to me, and signed it. 
By this document I was granted " leave of absence for 
— — ." On remarking to him that he had not specified 
tlie duration of the indulgence, the worthy gentleman was 
pleased to compliment me by saying, " I have left a blank 
for the time. Go, and stay until your health and strength 
are completely renovated, and fill up the blank at your 
return. You are deserving of the most favourable treat- 
ment/' I record with gratitude and pride such an ac- 
knowledgment of my anxious endeavours to discharge my 
official duties with efficiency; but I must also say that 
kindness and benignity were amongst his prominent cha^ 
racteristics. I left Dublin at the latter end of May, and 
proceeded through London to Ostend, and from thence 
by railway to Bonn, where I commenced ascending ** the 
wide and winding Rhine." Whilst waiting at the wharf 
for the steamer, and contemplating *' The castled crag of 
Drachenfels," I thought of Byron's lines, in which he 
describes the scenery which appeared so enchanting to 
Childe Harold, and also how 

<* Peasant girls with deep blue eyes, 
And hands which o£fei* earlj flowers, 
Walk smiling o'er this paradise ;** 

and I felt that the landscape before me transcended eren 
his description. I had, however, the greatest contnut 
offered to my view so far as regarded eyes, hands, or smiles. 
Four females approached with flowers, which they desired, 
to sell. They were all old women, and they constituted, 
in their features and figures, the most complete realization 
of hideous ugliness. It is not my intention to attempt 
any description of the scenes which successively astonished 
and delighted me whilst proceeding up the Rhine from 
Bonn to Mentz. I would fully adopt the unexaggerated 
truth contained in four short lines-r- 

*• The river nobly foams and flows, 

The charm of this enchanted ground, 
And all its thousand turns disclose 
jSome fresher beauties varying cooud.'* 

The Rhineland. 198 

I found the steamer extremely convenient and most 
agreeable, especially for a person debilitated by severe and 
recent indisposition. I do not recollect the charges for 
conveyance or refreshments, but I considered them mode- 
rate, and relished my repasts greatly, whether as regarded 
their materials, culinary preparation, or table attendance. 
The few hotels at which I stopped were very comfortable 
in every respect. At the Giant Hotel, Coblentz, I 
observed that the delicious wine, sparkling Moselle, was 
given for a Rhenish florin and a half, (two shillings and 
sixpence,) per bottle, and that Guinnesses Dublin Porter 
was precisely the same price there. I have heard some 
Germans, who understood English, remark on the designa- 
tion almost universally given to the Rhenish wines by us. 
The vineyards are nearly all on places considerably ele- 
vated, and the names of the wines have generally the 
prefix of "High."' The German word is *'Hoch," and 
they give it a guttural pronunciation which the Irish and 
Scotch can utter perfectly, but which an Englishman 
cannot accomplish. He hardens " hoch '* into " hock," 
and adopts the prefix alone as the name of the exhilarating 
fluid, and we follow his example. The mistake, how- 
ever, is perfectly harmless, for the abbreviation has not 
lessened the production, or deteriorated the flavor of the 

At Coblentz, I saw in a square before a church, the 
name of which I do not remember, a monument with two 
inscriptions, the first of which I considered indicative of 
silly and premature pride, whilst the second formed an 
instance of a complete junction of wit and wisdom. In 
1812, when the French had occupied Moscow, the prefect 
of Coblentz erected the monument and inscribed it thus — 


Memorable par la Campaonb 

contrb lbs russes, 


♦ The year 1812. Memorable by the campaign against the 
Kussians, during the prefecture of Jules Doazan. 

194 Twenty Years' RecoUections. 

In 1814 the fortunes of war had necessitated the retreat 
of the French before the allied forces, and Coblentz wai 
occupied by the Russians. Instead of demolishing the 
memorable record of the previous campaign, th« Russian 
commander of the force, by which the town was captured^ 
caused a supplementary statement to be added, which 
clearly showed the complete change of affairs. The addi- 
tion was as follows : — 


DE Coblentz. 1 Jan. 1814.* 

The people of Coblentz appeared to enjoy drawing a 
stranger's notice to these inscriptions, and it was easy 
to perceive that they considered the annexation of the 
Rhenish provinces to France, by the first Napoleon, as 
not merely objectionable, but detestable and insufferable. 
I believe that the same sentiments pervaded every part of 
Germany, which had been under the rule ot in the occu- 
pation of the French. As far as my sojourn in Germany 
enabled me to form an opinion, I thought that the people 
liked the English very much, and thoroughly disliked the 
French. I found them most friendly, and on several 
occasions when I have wished to procure fruit, and pro- 
duced money, pointing at the same time to apple, pear, or 
plum trees, in the unfenced gardens and orchards near 
Wiesbaden, the tree would be shaken, and signs made to 
me to pick up the fallen fruits, and money would be de- 
clined. This kindness was accorded to me because I was 
deemed an Englishman. I do not believe that an apple 
would have been gratuitously tendered to a Frenchman. 
In the places of public amusement, I repeatedly heard a 
certain lively tune played. It seemed to be decidedly 
popular, and I was informed that it owed its popularity 
to the fact of having been the quick-step to which the 
Prussians advanced upon the flank of the French army at 
the close of the battle of Waterloo. 

*Seen and approved by me, the Russian commander of Coblents, 
1st Jan, )8U. 

The Rhindand. 195 

In the preceding paragraph, I have mentioned unfenced 
gardens and orchards. I have passed along roads in the 
Rhenish land where, for five or six miles, there were no 
fences whatever between the highway and grounds appro*- 
priated to the culture of choice fruits and vegetables, and 
where no hedge, wall, or ditch intervened to distinguish or 
separate one holding from another. The bounds were 
marked by poles, on the tops of which bits of straw or 
dried rushes were plait ei ; but even such marks were not 
considered necessary at the edges of the public thorough* 
fare. Of course, in those districts grazing was impracti^ 
cable. No sheep or goats were to be seen, no horses, 
unless such as were yoked or saddled ; and the food for 
the cows was usually conveyed, in the morning and evenings, 
from the place of its production, in a cart drawn by one 
of themselves. The summer feeding for the cattle con^ 
sisted of clover, Italian rye-grass, Lucem, American cow^ 
grass, or yetches. I observed that the fodder was cut and 
left lying sufficiently long to become flagged before it wa^ 
given to the animals. The tillage in those districts pre- 
sented a great contrast to the generality of Irish crops. 
Neatness and cleanliness characterized the German cul- 
ture, and the weeds were excluded from the partnership 
which is so liberally accorded to them here. Near Wies- 
baden, I saw a very flourishing crop, which occupied, in 
my opinion, about two acres, and I was informed by 
Dr. Greiss, that the elevation of the place above sea-level 
was 2400 ft. The growth was tobacco, for the production 
of which our soil and climate are as well suited as those 
in which the Germans cultivate it. There it is taxed, or, 
as I believe, taken by the Government at a valuation, and 
made an Imperial monopoly. Here it is prohibited, tu 
form, perhaps, a very apt and forcible illustration of the 
principle of Free Trade. 

The springs at Wiesbaden are not numerous, but they 
constitute great natural curiosities. There is one which, 
if I remember rightly, is called the Kochbrunnen. It is 
intensely hot; and I was told that even in winter, the 
water i^ used ioic scalding the have oi£ %\»M^X^t^ "S^^^ 

196 Twenty Years^ Recollections, 

It gushes up profusely; and yet, within fifty yards of it, t^ 
there is a spring extremely cold and effervescent, precisely 
similar to the Seltzer water. Whilst the Roman empire 
continued, almost all the Rhineland was appurtenant to it, 
and Wiesbaden was then designated ^^Mattiacss aqua." 
It is believed that Nero visited it for the benefit of his 
health ; and there is a locality close to the town, where he 
is said to have sojourned, and which is named Nerothal, 
(Nero*s valley.) Some ancient edifices have Latin inscrip- 
tions denoting their former use or the names of their pris- 
tine occupants. The Germans take special care of such 
antique remains ; and instead of destroying relics of hea- 
thenism, they show them as indicating a state of darkness 
and degradation to which Christianity oifers the greatest 
and most glorious contrast. In reference to tiie gratitude 
of their votaries to Pagan deities for benefits attributed to 
the exercise of their peculiar powers, I only recollect one 
mythological inscription, which I was prevented from J 
forgetting by a ludicrous comment on it, made by a * 
Manchester visitant at Wiesbaden. In the Rssmerbad, 
(Roman bath,) there was a mural tablet in perfect preser- 
vation, every letter on the stone being as distinct as when 
cut many centuries ago. It was as follows : — 



The Manchester gent and I had become acquainted at 
the table d^hote of the "Four Seasons," and we happened 
to stroll into the Rsemerbad at the same time. Pointing 
to the mural tablet, he said — 

"Mr. Porter, they say that is Latin." 
"Yes," I replied, "you have been rightly informed.** 
" Could you untwist it, and tell us what it is about ?" 
" I shall try. To -^sculapius the healer, the soldiers of 
the fourteenth legion, in consequence of their health being 
restored, give, inscribe, and dedicate this votive tablet.'* 
Good heavens!" he exclaimed, " tAios^ <^\va^3 .were 


71ie RMneland. 197 

ivide awake ; and they knew how to pay a nice compli- 
ment, for of course this Skewlaypius was their regimental 

I regretted that there was not another tablet extant 
declaratory of their veneration and devotion to Mars, for 
it 3vould have elicited the interesting suggestion that his 
military rank was, at least, that of a colonel. 

I recollect seeing on an ancient tower of octagonal 
form, near Andernach, an inscription, in reference to 
which I heard many conjectures, and some of them ex- 
tremely absurd* It was as follows : — 



The conclusion at which I arrived was, that immediately 
beneath this direction a sentinel's station had been esta- 
blished, and that whether he stood, or walked "his lonely 
round," he was to bear in mind that to slumber on his 
post was ioexcusable, and subjected him to the forfeiture 
of life. 

One day I sat, in the large dining-room of the Four 
Seasons, near a noble lord who, with his lady, had been 
there for some weeks. She was a native of Germany, and 
he was an Irishman who possessed extensive estates in a 
southern county. I heard him say to a gentleman, who 
was recommending him to vihit Frankfort-on-the-Maine, 
that he could not adopt his suggestion, as he was obliged 
to start for home on the next day but one. That evening 
I was speaking to the landlord, and mentioned that I had 
heard my noble countryman tell his friend that he was 
about to leave. The landlord replied, " I am delighted to 
hear that they are going, for her other husband is to be 
here next week, and their meeting would be rather un- 
pleasant, especially as he is bringing his other wife,** 

At a short distance from Wiesbaden, the road to 

* " Stand awhile, waR: awhile, to sit down is forbidden, and to 
sleep IB to die,** 

^93 Twenty Yeard Mecolkctions, 

Schlangenbad (the serpent's bath) passes through s 
tion of a very extensive forest. In one of my rami 
left the highway, and walked into the dense wood 
when I thought that I had gone far enough, and t 
was time to return, I became suddenly aware that 
lost my way. In a state of extreme uneasiness I walk 
more than an hour, frequently shouting, but without 
ing any responsive voice. Dismal ideas arose in mj 
as to the probability of having to meet dangers and 
tions beyond my power of resistance or endurance 
length I found that there was a hill before me, on - 
the trees were rather sparse ; and having attained th 
vation, I was relieved from my apprehensions by a gl 
of the Rhine, and immediately directed my steps to^ 
the river, and soon emerged from the forest. If a 
Vfkj readers should contemplate a visit to any place i 
vicinity of extensive woods, they will avoid all lia 
to such annoyance as I suffered, by refraining frono 
tary forest rambles, and by taking such excursions y 
guide, or with companions acquainted with the loca 
Before I left Wiesbaden, a young gentleman n 
Vernon was found c^ead in the Taunus forest. His > 
Yras attributed to the bite of an adder or viper. 

In the Kursahl, at Wiesbaden, there was a Ri 
table, and also one for Rouge et Noir, The gambling 
^ot considered at all comparable to the play at B; 
Baden; nevertheless, I have seen many instanc 
serious, perhaps of ruinous losses. On one occas 
observed an Englishman who sat down at the Ro\ 
Noir table. He had a large leathern purse full of 
^nd certainly more than one thousand pounds in 
of England notes of fi^ty pounds each. In less th; 
hour, aU his money was absorbed, and some exclama 
garnished with imprecations, as he retired, impresse 
with the opinion that he was reduced to destiti 
Whilst I express the warmest approval of the aboliti 
those gambling establishments, and their recent suj 
sion in the German towns, I must admit having tri^ 
luck occasionally to the extent of foux ftot\xv% (^boi 

Ihe Rhineland. 199 

shillings and eightpence.) In almost every instance the 
remorseless rake added my stake to the accumulations of 
^Hhe bank." On the last evening that I was at the 
Kursahl, I went in a party of nine persons, of whom six 
were ladies. One of my fair companions proposed that 
each of us should contribute four florins, and stake the 
amount on red. This was acceded to, and I stepped for* 
ward and placed the money on the colour. The bystand- 
ers were numerous, and when it was announced that the 
red had won, I picked up the seventy-two florins, but 
whilst doing so, I heard an exclamation from one end of 
the orowd^ — " That would be a nice story to tell at the 
Dublin police-office." 

During my stay at Wiesbaden, I visited Mentz, or 
Mayence, several times. On the flrst occasion, I was 
crossing the bridge from the right ban Is of the Rhine, and 
inet a young officer in Austrian uniform. At that period 
Mentz was termed a Confederate town, and its garrison 
was composed of an equal number of Prussian and Aus- 
trian troops. I had seen enough of them at Wiesbaden 
to satisfy me that an inquiry on the part of a stranger 
would receive a kind and polite reply. I consequently 
accosted the gentleman in French, being quite destitute of 
German beyond the name of the place to which I wished 
to go, which was the Music Garden. To my surprise 
and great gratification, he said, '' If it is the same thing 
to you, Mr. Porter, to speak English, I shall give you any 
information in my power." I told him that I wanted a 
direction to the Music Garden, and he replied, " I have to 
}eave an order with the officer on guard at the Cassel end 
of the bridge, and then 1 shall return to my quarters, and 
the Music Garden is on the way, I shall show it to you 
in a few minutes." During our walk, I asked him how 
he knew my name, and was informed that he remembered 
seeing me at the assizes of Nenagh ; that he was a '*Tip- 
perary boy," born and reared within sight of the Devil's 
Bit Mountain, and his name was Scully. He was a cap- 
tain in an infantry regiment, and appeared to be perfectly 
contented with his position and il% a^X/^tA'd^XNX. '^\q<^^^^\.^< 

200 Twenty Yeat^s' Recollections. 

We thoroughly fraternized, and I never again went to 
Mentz without calling at his quarters. He expressed an 
intention of visiting Ireland, and promised to favor me 
with a renewal of our friendly intercourse in Dublin ; but 
my hopes of seeing him have not been realized, and I fear 
that he has not escaped all the disastrous combats in 
which, since 1851, the Austrian forces have been en- 

Nothing tends more to render a sojourn in the Rhine- 
land agreeable, than the great number of persons connected 
with hotels, railways, steamers, and other public estab- 
lishments, who understand English. Indeed I may ex- 
tend the observation to Belgium also. A foreigner in 
Dublin, if he is unacquainted with our language, has to 
encounter more difficulties than we would have to contend 
with in the places to which I have referred. This is to 
be regretted ; for exquisitely beautiful as Rhenish, Swiss, 
or Italian scenery may be justly considered, still Ireland 
can present to a foreign tourist, views numerous and ex- 
tensive, which cannot be surpassed in picturesque beauty. 
I have never met a foreigner who had seen the principal 
places of attraction in our country, who was not most 
enthusiastic in his expressions of admiration. Our insular 
position is no longer a serious obstacle to the traveller 
who may wish to visit even the most remote districts; 
and it is to be hoped that at no distant time Ireland shall 
be far better 'known by strangers. They should be en- 
couraged by the most respectful and attentive treatment; 
and when we find that in the Mechanics' Institute of 
Dublin, a member will be instructed in French, German, 
or Italian, at the very moderate charge of six shillings per 
quarter, it is not creditable to our trading and operative 
classes that they should not attain to educational acquire- 
ments equal to those possessed by a considerable number 
of the same classes in several continental countries. 
Although I am a Dublin man, I regret that I must admit 
the superiority of Cork as regards the means of satisfac- 
tory communication with foreigners, understanding them 
and being understood. 

lite Rhineland. 201 

Before I close my observations on the very interesting 
portion of Germany in which 1 had so agreeable a sojourn, 
I shall relate a couple of incidents from which my readers 
may form an idea as to the honest tendencies of the 
people. I spent an evening, along with some of my 
Wiesbaden associates, at the Music Garden of Mentz, 
and the weather being rather close and sultry, I took off 
a waterproof overcoat, and laid it on a rockery just beside 
our refreshment table. When the musical performances 
and other amusements had terminated, I departed without 
recollecting the garment, and arrived at Wiesbaden before 
I became aware of my forgetfulness. Next morning I set 
off to Mentz to try my chance of recovering the vestment, 
but with very slight hopes of succeeding. At the garden, 
a person connected with the establishment, on being in- 
formed of my business, said, in English, " Come to the 
place where you threw off your overcoat, and you will 
most probably find it." Accordingly, when we reached 
the rockery, I saw the coat lying where I placed it, and 
having possessed myself of it, observed to my conductor 
that I was extremly lucky, for unquestionably more than 
one thousand persons must have passed the spot on the 
previous evening. " Oh, yes," replied the German ; " the 
garden was crowded, but there was not a man here who 
saw your coat lying there, without knowing that it was not 

At Biebrich, the office of the steamers plying on the 
Hhine is in a house on the quay. It faces the south, but 
abuts the public thoroughfare without any rails or other 
fence. On the front wall there were two vines, on which 
there was an abundant crop of grapes ; and on the day of 
my departure, wliilst waiting for the steamer, I remarked 
to the agent that his fruit was almost ripe, and that it 
appeared to be of first-rate quality. He said that another 
week would suffice to ripen them perfectly, and that they 
were of very fine flavor. I observed that there was a 
strong temptation for his neighbours, and even for the 
casual passengers who walked the quay, to assume a part- 
nership in such desirable prodvxclioxis. l^ft -^^^-viaa^ ^j^a- 

202 Twenty Teart^ Beeolkctions. 

prised at my observation, and told me that no penon 
would interfere with his vines, adding, " The grapes will 
be all left for me to gather. They have never been taken 
by anyone else, for they are grown on my wall^ and <vrt 
mine" I do not think that in any part of the United 
Kingdom there woald be the slightest chance of fruit 
grown in a similar public situation, and unprotected by ^ 
strong fence, being left to the enjoyment of its owner, oif 
even allowed to ripen. 




On my way home from the Rhineland, I stopped for two 
days in Brussels, the second of which happened to be the 
day on which the anniversary of the attainment of Belgian 
independence was celebrated. I recollect seeing a monur 
ment which had been erected to the memory of those who 
had been killed in the ranks of the Belgian revolutionists, 
and amongst the names inscribed on it I observed " Cor- 
coran, Irlandais," so that the Emerald Isle was not totally 
unrepresented on the occasion. Brussels was very full 
at the time of the f^te, and in its crowded streets and 
squares a tolerable idea might be obtained of the confusion 
of tongues incident to the abortive attempt to erect the 
Tower of Babel. German, French, Flemish, English, 
Italian, Spanish, and the various languages of the more 
northern countries were abundantly ventilated, and witt 
an effect which I thought extremely amusing. The city 
presented a very martial appearance, for not only the 
regular troops but the national guards also of the kingdom 
were made available for a grand review by their sovereign, 
lieopold the First. Each regiment had its " vivandiet*es" 
.^nd I was informed that those oC U\e u^tXioTi^bl ^uaxds 

Boyal Children. 208 

were women of the same social rank as the members of 
the regiment to which they were attached. Their costume 
was as much assimilated to the uniforms of their respeo^ 
tive regiments as female attire would permit. The grena- 
diers had vtvandkres of a height proportionally tall ; the 
other regiments were accompanied by women, perhaps I 
should say ladies, of lesser stature, but all of them were, 
in my opinion, unexceptionally beautiful, and of most 
graceful and decorous demeanor. 

At the time to which I refer, 1851, I was impressed 
with the conviction that no people could be more attached 
to a sovereign than the Belgians were to Leopold, and to 
his family. I did not form that opinion from the loud 
and spontaneous acclamations which greeted him and his 
children in the streets and at the review, but from the 
joyous expression which irradiated the countenances of all 
ranks and conditions, and impressed me with the belief that 
their loyalty was not merely respectful, but thoroughly 
sincere and affectionate. Regal splendor may dazzle its 
beholders, and popular demonstrations may excite and 
perhaps enlist many of those who witness their display ; 
but I venture to assert that human nature can produce no 
spectacle more worthy of being admired and remembered 
than the cordial and enthusiastic reception of a benign 
and beloved monarch, by contented, happy, and loyal 


On the occasion to which I have last referred, one of 
the royal carriages contained three children, two boys and 
a girl, with their tutor and governess. The girl was 
Leopold's only daughter, and her name was identical with 
that of his lirst wife, Charlotte. The little Belgian prin- 
cess was then eleven years of age, and was exceedingly 
pretty. She was delicately fair, blue-eyed, and flaxen- 
haired, and appeared to appreciate highly the popular ac- 
clamations which were frequently announced as specially 
intended for her. The joyous co\Milftivwi^^,"\xt^^\^\R.^V^ 

204 Twenty Years* Recollections. 

the excitement incident to demonstrations of enthusiastic 
approbation, seemed inaccessible to the wrinkles of care, 
and exempt from the lachrymal effects of sorrow. Never- 
theless, that royal child has furnished a most piteous 
instance of the mutability of fortune, of accumulated 
miseries substituted for the apparent approach of tran- 
scendent happiness. To her have been allotted 

" The hopes that but allure to fly. 

The joys that vanish while we sip ; 
Like Dead-Sea fruits that tempt the eye, 
But turu to ashes on the lip!" 

In about six years after the time to which my reminis- 
cence refers, she became- the consort of Ferdinand Maxi- 
milian, eldest brother of the Emperor of Austria, who 
subsequently, at the instance of Napoleon the Third, 
assumed the title of Emperor of Mexico, but haviag 
utterly failed in his efforts to establish the Imperial autho- 
rity to which he aspired, was shot as a culprit, by order 
of the President Juarez, in 1867, leaving his bereaved 
widow in such affliction as to produce a state of insanity 
from which she is not expected to recover. 



On my return from the Continent, I spent a few days 
in London, and had a most gratifying opportunity of seeing 
the Great Exhibition in Hyde Park, which, apart from its 
own attractions and merits, afforded an example to the 
civilized nations of the world, stimulating their pursuits 
of the industrial arts, awakening dormant energies, and 
evoking amicable competitions and peaceful rivalries. I 
happened to express to the Commissioner of Police, a 
wish to be admitted to the building at night, and he gave 
me a note to the Superintendent in charge there, directing 
him to conduct me through it. The structure was lighted 
sufficiently to afford means to the police on duty to keep 
it safe from the designs of marauders and from accidental 
injury. Profound silence was ou\y m\.^it\x^\.^d by the 

Home Agiin : A Preacher. 205 

chiming of the clocks, and the announcement at certain 
intervals of "All's well." The solitude, the subdued 
light, the banners of all nations, statues and other works 
of art, of which I was the only spectator in that splendid 
and extensive edifice, suggested contemplative feelings 
which I am not adequate to express; but I can safely 
assert that my midnight visit to the great Crystal Palace 
of 1851, afforded me greater gratification than I ever 
derived from any public spectacle however gorgeous or 

HOME again: a preacher. 

When I returned to Dublin, I found that one of the 
magistrates of the northern division was only waiting for 
my appearance before making an application for leave of 
absence ; and his request having been acceded to, it was 
arrangied that I was to do duty in the northern court on 
two days in each week, namely, Tuesdays and Thursdays. 
I was sitting in my own court on a Wednesday, when 
a constable preferred a charge against a man named 
Dowling, for collecting a crowd, causing a very great 
obstruction in Parliament Street, and refusing to piove 
on when required. He was a street-preacher, who ap- 
peared to be extremely fanatical, insisting that he had a 
special mission to announce the glad tidings of salvation 
to the benighted people of Dublin. On hearing the evi- 
dence, 1 stated that his conduct was a nuisance, and that 
I should send the case for trial, unless the constable 
withdrew the complaint on the express promise of the 
accused party that the offence should not be repeated. 
To this the prosecutor agreed, and the preacher said " he 
would shake the dust off his shoes as a testimony against 
roe, but that I should never again have to investigate 
such a complaint against him." He was discharged; but 
on the following day, I had to dispose of a similar charge 
against him in the northern court. He manifested very 
little displeasure against his prosecutor, but seemed to 
leserre ai J his indignation for me\ atid^V^TxV^^tccecw^^^ 

206 Twenty Years* Recollections. 

bim of the promise he had made on the previous day, he 
replied that he had made himself acquainted with the 
bounds, of my division in the south of the district, and 
did not intend ever to raise his voice there again, but that 
I was not satisfied to get rid of him, but had followed him 
to the northern division, to continue an unworthy persecn* 
tion of a zealous but humble laborer in the vineyard of 
salvation. I was highly amused, as were many of the 
persons present, at the tendency attributed to me to pursue 
the street-preacher ; and when he declared that he would 
leave Dublin, I suggested to the police constable the 
withdrawal of his charge, to which he readily acceded, 
and the accused party was discharged. In about six 
weeks after this incident I went to Liverpool with a near 
relative who was about to proceed to Australia, and having 
gone into the police-courts there when the morning busi- 
ness was about to commence, one of the clerks told the 
magistrate (Mr. Rush ton) that I was present, and he most 
courteously offered me a seat on the bench. The first 
charge on the sheet was for obstructing the thoroughfare^ 
by collecting a crowd, and refusing to desist from preach* 
ing there ; and Dowling was the delinquent. He did not 
wait for the constable to be sworn or the charge stated, 
but at once exclaimed that he despaired of obtaining any 
justice, when they had imported me from Dublin to sit ia 
judgment on him there. His excitement and indignation 
produced great merriment, especially when Mr. Rushton 
told him that I was not there in any official capacity, but 
as a private individual who had not interfered, directly or 
indirectly, in any matter coming before the court. He 
was discharged with a caution. I have never seen him 
since : and I mention the case of this street-preacher only 
to show how accidental circumstances may produce, in 
some minds, the most unfounded conclusions. 


On my resumption of duty in Dublin, I had rery few 
GMes of importance or peculiai inX^i^t^t Va di^^^^ qC I 

Visit to Paris. 207 

may mention one in which two men were charged with 
being actively engaged in a riotous tumult in Dean Street, 
and assaulting the police. They had been extremely 
violent, and one of the constables had been so severely 
injured as to be incapacitated for duty during several 
days. In almost all such cases the prosecutors preier a 
summary decision ; and in the one to which my present 
remarks apply, I stated that I considered the prisoners, 
Foley and Magrath, deserved the utmost punishment 
which I was empowered to award, namely two months' 
imprisonment with hard labor. The culprits loudly ex- 
claimed against such a judgment, and vociferated that 
they should get a full and fair trial by a jury. I acceded 
to their demand, and returned the informations to the 
next commission of Oyer et Terminer for the city of Dublin, 
There never was a more complete exemplification of an 
escape from the frying-pan by a fall into the fire. They 
were tried and convicted before Baron Richards, and he 
sentenced them to be imprisoned for twelve months, and 
kept to hard labor each alternate month. Their repug- 
nance to a summary conviction had received great publi- 
city ; and the increased punishment to which' they were 
subjected had the effect of reconciling the delinquents 
who were subsequently brought to the police-court to the 
fullest exercise, by the magistrates, of their summary 


In 1853 a prosecution was instituted by a lady, named 
Kelly, against a Mr. Birch, whom she accused of em- 
bezzling or stealing a very considerable sum of money. 
Her informations were sworn before my colleague, Mr. 
Magee, and he issued a warrant for the apprehension of 
Birch, which was delivered to a very intelligent and 
active officer, who subsequently was promoted to be the 
chief superintendent. The accused party was supposed 
to be in France, whither it was intended to send Mr. 
ByaQ with the warrant. I had notbixii^ viW.^N^t v^ ^^ 

208 I'wentf/ Yeara^ Recollections, 

with the case, and I chanced to be sitting beside Mr. 
Magee when an application was made to him that he 
should go to France, having his expenses fully paid, and 
taking with him all the documents relating to the charge, 
for the information and satisfaction of the French autho- 
rities. Mr. Magee at once refused the request, alleging 
that his health would not admit of rapid travelling, but 
'suggesting that Mr. Porter might undertake the journey, 
and fetch all the papers likely to induce the French 
functionaries to consent to the extradition of Birch, in the 
event of Ryan being able to find him. 1 consented to this 
arrangement, and set off for Paris, where I remained for a 
fortnight without any arrest having been effected of the 
accused party by the officer holding the warrant. I was 
never called on to produce the informations, and had no 
warrant in my possession, nor did I feel the slightest 
anxiety on the subject. Ryan was proceeding to France, 
when he ascertained that Birch was in Southampton, and 
there the capture was effected. A rumor was circulated 
in Dublin that I had gone to Paris to make a search, 
personally, for the alleged offender, when, in fact, I had 
neither the power nor the inclination to interfere beyond 
producing the informations which had been sworn before 
my colleague, and to authenticate them if required. My 
expenses were fully paid, and I found, on returning to 
Dublin, that the prosecution was abandoned, My short 
sojourn in the French capital was extremely pleasant; 
and having made myself known, as a Dublin police-magis- 
trate, by the production of my passport at the prefecture, 
I experienced very kind and agreeable attentions. A 
man who spoke English was directed to attend me when 
visiting the public institutions, and I received a tricolored 
card, which procured me admission to all the theatres. I 
am tempted to mention one performance which I saw in 
a small theatre on the Boulevard near the large barracks, 
(La Caserne de Prince Eugene.) I do not recollect the' 
title of the piece, but it exhibited the most extraordinary 
adaptation of machinery that 1 ever beheld, and the stage- 
trJcks transcended all that I had ^^reviously seen or 3up- 

Visit to Parts. 209 

posed possible. A scene represented a railway terminus, 
and on the arrival of a train, the engine exploded, and 
the carriage next to it was torn asunder. One passfenger 
was supposed to have had his head knocked off, his arms 
separated from his shoulders, and his lower extremities 
from his hips, and the body, head, and limbs were seen, 
as the vapour cleared off, lying on the roof of a shed, 
I^ders were instantly applied, and the passenger was 
taken down piecemeal. A bench was pushed forward 
on the platform, it seemed covered with dark cushions, and 
the trunk of the victim was placed on it, the head was 
affixed and the lower extremities were attached, an arm 
added on the left side, when a poodle dog joined in the 
performance by seizing the other arm and taking it off 
the stage. Instantly the man arose, appai'ently with only 
one arm, and pursued the dog, exclaiming that the cursed 
poodle should not have his arm for supper. He returned, 
bringing the arm, and resumed his place on the bench, 
where the apparent reunion of his frame was completed, 
A surgeon was supposed to have been sent for, and he 
came too late to claim any share in the restoration of life 
and vigor to the dismembered patient. On proceeding to 
feel the pulse, he was rewarded by a slap on the cheek, 
accompanied with the contemptuous intimation of **Fotct 
voire honoraire" (Here's your fee.) 1 may remark that 
there did not appear to be any dripping of blood on the 
shed, neither did the platform or bench show any gory 
stains ; and the performers who represented railway 
officials of the various grades, and passengers, male and 
female, to the number of twenty at least, intervened four 
or five times between the bench and the audience, as if 
actuated by the deepest anxiety for the supposed sufferer. 
I was not much surprised at the apparent deficiency of 
the right arm, for I had several times seen the late Pat 
Brophy, of Dawson Street, Dublin, representing Nelson 
in Sitableau vivant, and he managed on those occasions to 
appear as if he had lost an arm. The incidents which I 
have attempted to describe were only stage-tricks^ bufe 
they wejre nwat perfectly accomplished. 

210 Twenty, Years' Recollections. 

A gentleman, who appeared to me to fill the offiee of 
secretary or chief clerk at the prefecture, availed himself 
of several opportunities for having conversations with me 
in English. I related to him some of the anecdotes and 
circumstances which I have included in the preceding 
pages, and he reciprocated by affording me much informal 
tion and amusement. At our last interview, M. Hubert 
gave me six volumes, containing memoirs derived from 
the archives of the Parisian police, from the time of 
Cardinal Richelieu's administration down to the accessioa 
of Louis Philippe. I cannot offer many extracts from these 
volumes to the reader, but I shall notice two narratives 
which I was assured were, in their main circumstances^ 
strictly true. One was subsequently shown to me in a 
collection of tales, and I considered it so amusing that I 
shall translate it in these pages. The other will, I hopiSf 
be deemed a striking instance of mere fact being far 
stranger than fiction. The former was entitled '^ Michel 
Perrin," and it is as. follows : — 


" I must go ; I must depart as soon as possible. I 
plainly perceive that she has sold her watch without in- 
forming me. She has to work hard from morning to 
night ; the needle of a woman cannot provide for the re- 
quirements of two persons. Ah ! I ought to have lefi 
long before this ! But where to go ? without money, with- 
out family influence, without friends I How to get on 
in a world where I have never as yet lived, of the habits 
and customs of which I am as uninformed as an infant 
child I Nevertheless, I shall go, were I to beg on the 
highway ; were I to die of hunger, I shall go." 

This soliloquy is referred to the eighth year of the Re- 
public, in a very humble apartment, which perhaps atUi 
exists at Dijon, and which was then inhabited by a formet 
pastor of a small village in the department of the Cote- 
d'Or. Michel Perrin, who had lived up to that time it 
performing acts of charity, praying to his Crei^tor, ui4 

Michel Penin. 211 

oultivating the garden of his manse, had found himself 
torn from the asylum in which twenty-two years of his 
tranquil existence had been spent. Deprived of the 
slender stipend attached to his functions, persecuted by 
some agents of the Republican Government, and suspected 
by all, the poor priest had rambled for a considerable 
time from village to village, sometimes to avoid captivity, 
sometimes to avail himself of the friendship of the many 
kind hearts whose gratitude he had earned in happier 
times. Lastly, for a year he had lived at Dijon. There 
he had rejoined his sister, Madeleine Perrin, the supreme 
mistress of his establishment, and also his sole support in 
the world. 

Madeleine, on leaving the manse, had betaken herself 
direct to Dijon, where she hoped to renew some old friend- 
ships, and to support herself by needlework. She had 
fully succeeded in utilising her talents for sewing to the 
extent of providing for her own wants; but when the 
good pastor, yielding to her earnest entreaties, had come 
to occupy one of the two little garret-rooms which con- 
stituted her residence, Madeleine soon became aware that 
a man, still in vigorous health and of good appetite, is 
more difficult to be fed than to be lodged. 

She nevertheless completely refrained from discovering 
to her dear Michel the slightest shadow of her uneasiness 
regarding the future of them both. Anyone who heard 
her singing whilst plying her needle, or who had witnessed 
how, after having placed upon the table a savory repast, 
she cried, "Michel, your dinner is ready,'* would pro- 
nounce her to be a happy lass. However, at night, Made- 
leine was no sooner on her bed, and aware, by his loud 
snoring, that her brother was soundly sleeping, than a 
crowd of sad thoughts would arise to besiege her mind. 
When a delay in the payment of her earnings produced 
some difficulties, eight days of sickness brought a fearful 
aggravation of her misery. Moreover, she was becoming 
aged, being only two years younger than Michel, who was 
entering on his fiftieth year. Already her sight was weak- 
ened, and soon she might be unable to b^'N^ ^n^\2l ^S:!ik3L 

212 Twenty Years' Recoliections, 

the aid of classes. In vain did poor Madeleine strive to 
dispel thoughts so dark, so afflicting. More than once 
did the rising sun irradiate her chamber, and reca) her to 
work without her eyes having been closed by sleep. 

On his part, Michel Perrin, notwithstanding the efforts 
of his sister to conceal the result of his residence with her, 
was not slow in discovering the sad truth. From that 
time he had not ceased to form plans to effect the earning 
on his own part of even a few pence ; but Madeleine re- 
pelled every suggestion which appeared to her as tending 
to lessen the dignity of the reverend pastor. Only one 
project had received her assent. She agreed to see her 
brother, whose studies had been refined and extensive, 
giving lessons in Greek and Latin, so that no person could 
have a son or nephew without being besought by her to 
make the boy learn the dead languages, and to choose 
Michel Perrin as his master ; but whether the people of 
Dijon made little of those old acquirements, or that the 
learning of a village pastor did not inspire them with 
sufHcient confidence, Madeleine addressed herself in vain 
to her friends or employers to give the smallest pupil to 
her brother, at even the smallest price. " He is still very 
clever," the poor woman would say, when she tried one 
of her vain efforts ; '* I wish you would come and see us. 
He never reads anything but Latin or Greek, except when 
he is at his breviary. If that does not convince you of 
his capability, I can say no more." She derived from all 
her applications only deep sighs without even shallow 

It was true that the worthy pastor had no other amuse- 
ment whatsoever than repeated perusals of Homer and 
Tacitus, which he had managed to save from the wreck 
of his scanty chattels. They constituted his whole library. 
Leading a life completely retired, when the weather pre- 
oladed him from taking a solitary ramble, he passed his 
time in reading, praying, or chatting with his sister, whose 
▼O'ce was almost the only one by which he had been 
aooosted during the past twelve months ; consequently, 
MUhougb bis affection for Madeiem^\i«k.^\>^^ii «.V««.^*x«ry 

Michel Petrw. 218 

great, it had become so intense as to make him regard 
another separation from her as the most deplorable of all 
his misfortunes. It was therefore in a miserable state of 
mind that he awaited Madeleine's return, each time that 
she left home in a renewed hope of procuring him pupils. 
For a considerable time he had refrained from asking her 
the question too often followed by the reply of disappoint- 
ment. It was enough for her to give him a silent em- 
brace, and that after she had thrown her shawl upon the 
bed, she betook herself at once to her work, for him to 
form the determination of leaving ; and the sale of her 
watch, to which she attached peculiar value, confirmed 
his resolution. 

He had decided on the following week as the time for 
a separation too afflicting, when one morning Madeleine 
returned, her countenance indicating that her mind was 
engrossed by some recent and unusual subject. Michel 
Perrin, absorbed in his reflections, did not at first observe 
her serious features. She was seated and working near 
the window, whilst the pastor, with an open book lying 
on his knees, was racking his mind as to how he could 
obtain the means of sustaining life when he would quit 
his sole remaining asylum. 

** What a misfortune that Paris is so far off," said 
Madeleine several times, without perceiving perhaps that 
she was speaking aloud. 

At the fourth or fifth repetition of this expression, 
Michel raised his head — " VVhy so, my dear sister ?" said 
he ; ** wherefore do you wish Paris to be nearer ?" 

" Ah! wherefore ? It would take too much of your 
time to listen to me, my dear brother, and you are reading 
your breviary, I believe.*' 

"Tell me fully the reasons for your wish,*' replied the 
pastor, laying his book upon the table. 

^* It is because I have chanced to hear a matter so aston- 
ishing, so surprising. It must be admitted that some 
people are extremely lucky." 

*' We cannot be considered so," said Michel, as he 
breathed a heavy sigh. 


214 Twenty Years* Recollections. 

**No; but your old class-fellow, Eugene Camus. Are 
you aware that he went to Paris in quest of employment ? 
Well, he has come back for a few days, after having 
obtained a situation of two thousand francs a-year in the 
consolidated taxes." 

*' A place of two thousand francs !" exclaimed the good 
pastor. "You are right in saying that some are very 
lucky, Madeleine, for I would adduce this poor Eugene 
Camus as the most thorough blockhead and dunce that 
ever came from the college of Juilly." 

" Well, he was dying of hunger at Paris for nearly two 
years ; but his good fortune brought it about that another 
pupil of the Oratorians, Joseph Fouchd, of whom you 

have frequently spoken to me '* 

** Oh I Joseph Fouch6 should be a very different kind 
of man. I am very glad to hear that he is still living. A 
cunning fellow without any doubt, and always amongst 
the first. He and I acted together, as they said in the 
college ; he helped me in my tasks, and in return I fought 
for him ; for I was a stout, healthy youth, and Joseph 
Fouch^ was by no means strong," 

" That has not hindered him from getting forward in 
the world, I must say that for him. He is minister — 
minister of, what shall I term it ? It is all the same ; it 
appears that when one becomes minister he may do what- 
ever he wishes, and as his greatest pleasure consists in 

making the fortunes of his old class-fellows" 

'* If I was sure of that," interrupted the poor pastor, 
with great emotion. 

'^ I think he gave you a sufficient proof in * placing 
Camus as I have described," replied Madeleine; "but 
Camus, being in Paris, could see him, could speak to him." 
*' And why should not I go to Paris, Madeleine ? " ex- 
claimed Michel Perrin, with an air of determination. " I 
shall go, sister ; I shall see Fouche ; I shall speak with 
him ; since he has recognised Camus, who was not more 
than two years at Juilly, I am certain that he will re- 
<N>gnise me also." 

"Would you wish to undertake so long a journey* 

Michel Perrin. 215 

Michel ?" said the kmd sister, in great dismay ; '^ no, no, 
my dear brother." 

^ Hear me, Madeleine," replied the pastor, moving his 
tseat close to her, '* whether 1 go to Paris or elsewhere, I 
•shall leave this place." 

" You are going away ! You wish to leave me !" 

" Your earnings are merely sufficient for your own sup- 
port, my dear Madeleine. 1 do not wish any longer to 
eat the half of them ; and all that you can say to induce 
me to .remain will only annoy me, without making me 
abandon my resolution. Departing from this place, is it 
not the better course for me to go to Paris than any 
other place, inasmuch as you give me the hope of finding 
a friend there ?" 

'^ But Paris is so far," said Madeleine, bursting into 

*' Bah I sixty or eighty leagues, what is that distance to 
a good walker ? What annoys me the most, is having to 
take from you two or three crowns to support me on the 
road and at the commencement of my sojourn. Can you 
make out so much ?'' 

** I shall not let you depart for Paris with two or three 
crowns, Michel, you may be assured of that," said poor 
Madeleine, sobbing. 

"That would be beyond my requirements, sister. 
Something tells that once I arrive there, I shall find re» 
Aources, and that my first letter from Paris will bring you 
good news." 

The poor clergyman appeared so full of hope from the 
success of his journey, that he finished by imparting it to 
Madeleine. Without being fully consoled, she smiled 
sometimes at the agreeable perspective which her brother 
ofiered to her imagination. He perhaps did not indulge 
in very sanguine expectations, but having decided on 
being no longer a burden to her, he felt that he could act 
as a messenger or woodcutter when the good Madeleine 
was not at hand to prevent him. 

The preparations for such a journey not being of a 
nature to delay it^ in two days after thaV oC y(\\\&\i^^V!c^^^ 

216 Ta:enty Yeam^ Recollections. 

been speaking, Madeleine carefully made up a bundle for 
her beloved brother, which he was to carry on the end of 
a stick, and gave him a sealed rouleau in which, she said, 
there were forty francs ; and when the brother and sister 
had embraced each other again and again, in tearful afflic- 
tion, they separated. 

The pastor accomplished ten leagues in his first day's 
journey, impelled by the double anxiety for a speedy 
arrival, and an avoidance cf expense on the road. He 
was far richer than he supposed ; for on the secoi^d day, 
his purse being empty, although he had lived on bread 
and cheese, he opened the rouleau, and his surprise 
equalled his grateful affection when he found three pieces 
of gold besides the forty francs. Feeling certain that 
Madeleine had not been able to provide such a sum with- 
out contracting debts, he resolved not to spend this gold, 
and to send it back by the first opportunity ; but he was 
not the less thankful for her sisterly love. 

As soon as he had taken up his abode at the most 
moderately furnished hotel of the capital, he did not lose 
a moment in acquiring information on various subjects 
which he considered conducive to his chances of obtaining 
an industrial livelihood. From his landlord he learned 
that Joseph Fouch^ was the minister of the general police, 
and that all the ministers gave a public audience once in 
each week, but that in order to obtain a special interview, 
it was necessary to request it by letter. Accordingly he 
penned the following note : — 

"Citizen Minister, 

*' Michel Perrin implores his former class-fellow, Joseph Fouch^, 
to receive him as soon as possible. He is lodging at the hotel 
du Soleil, rue Mouffetard." 

*' yiale et me ama,^* 
" Health and respect." 

Michel • supposed that prefixing a Latin adieu to 
" Health and Respect," would remind Joseph of the time 
when, seated on the same bench, they were studying 
Cicero, Almost an entire week elapsed without any 

>Ijr from the minister ; aud viVieu ^\0(\^\ ^►^^^ \!&^ 

Michel Perrm, 217 

landloird if it erer happened that such notes were left 
unanswered, the latter mentioned about fifty instances of 
such neglect, almost without drawing breath. 

His hopes were thus completely annihilated ; and already 
he was only thinking of earning his bread by the sweat of 
his brow, when one evening the porter brought him a 
letter. After breaking the seal with a trembling hand, he 
read these words which seemed to him to be written in 
letters of gold : — " 

"The minister of the general police will receive the citizen, 
Michael Perrin, on Thursday the 24th inst, at one o*clock.'* 

A person should, like our hero, have returned after 
having, in a state of utter despondency, traversed the 
streets of Paris, those streets so populous, but in which 
he would seek in vain for even an individual inclined to 
extend the hand of succour, to be able to form an idea of 
his joyful hope that he had at last found a protector — a 
powerful protector. Accordingly, he wrote, before retiring 
to rest, to Madeleine, that he was to be with the minister of 
the general police on the ensuing Thursday, 

On the appointed day, Michel Perrin was in the ante- 
chamber of the minister before noon. Seated on the edpe 
of a bench, he endeavoured to banish the timidity natural 
to those who have continuously lived apart from the 
world, and which the sight of a mansion in which every- 
thing indicated power and opulence tended to augment. 
To embolden himself, he recurred to his college days, and 
he was repeating for perhaps the hundredth time that 
Joseph Fouche had been his class-fellow, when he was 
called in. 

Fouch^ was alone in his cabinet, seated before a desk 
covered with papers. He had hardly raised his head and 
fixed his small reddish eyes on the person entering, than 
assuming a cheerful manner-—" There was no necessity," 
he said, " to announce you, for on my faith, I could not 
have met you in the street without recognising you."* 

• I was informed by M. Turpin that BoncVv^ i.t^^wv>\^ x^"^\Rk^. 
the incidents of this narrative which were SMV^aeo^'WvX. Vi >Jcvfe\c*i«.- 
vievr, but without naming his old class-kWovr. — ^. V. ^. 

2lS Twenty Tears' Eecollections, 

At this friendly reception the poor pastor fully resnmed 
bis courage. 

** And you, too, citizen minister," he answered, cordially 
grasping the hand which Fouche extended to him, " you 
have so slightly changed that I believe myself recurring to 
the time when old Yieil allotted us our tasks.'' 

The figure of the minister assumed an appearance of 
cheerfulness which was by no means habitual. Perhaps 
the sight of an old college comrade served to relieve him 
of some disagreeable reflections, perhaps it recalled to a 
deputy of the convention the recollection of the time when 
his life was simple and innocent. 

** Sit down there/' he said in a gay tone, " and tell uie 
how you have got on in this world, since we lost sight of 
each other." 

*' I have lived for many years as happily as possible,** 
replied Michel with a sigh ; for shortly after my ordina- 
tion, I obtained a living in the most agreeable village of 

^' A poor position at present that of a pastor must be 1" 
replied the minister, shaking his head. 

'' So poor in fact that after having been thrust out of 
the door of my manse, ruined, persecuted, I have lived 
during the last seven years on the benefactions of some 
charitable, kind souls." 

** And why the devil did you not try to get out of your 
difficulties ? You should bestir yourself." 

^' Bestir, bestir ! That is easy said. At first I was 
obliged to hide myself in the farms, in the cottages, 
because I was suspected, or they pretended so ; and I 
would ask you of what should I be suspected ? But in 
ffhort, matters proceeded thus in the department of the 

And in many other departments," said Fouch^ ; " but 
when you no longer feared for your head, you should have 
thought of your purse." 

" If thinking of it would have filled it, it would never 
have become empty," replied Michel with a sorrowful 
smile. ^^ I believe more ideas pass through the mind of a 

Michd Perrin. 219 

)oor fellow who is trying to gain a crown than passed 
.hroiigh the mind of Homer when writing the Iliad or 

'* And that did not lead you to any decided course ? " 

** To nothing but to come to Paris," Michel paused, 
3ut not without directing on his college friend a look more 
expressive than any words. 

Fouch^ smiled. " Did you know that I was minister ?" 
said he. 

** Certainly." 

** And you have counted on me," replied Fouche, with 
a kindness inspired by the thorough frankness of this man. 

*' Counted on you so much/' replied the poor pastor, 
^* that after God you are my only hope. Employ me 
ivbere you wish, at whatever you choose, my destitution 
has absorbed all other difficulties. I shall not recoil from 
any description of employment. I am resolved to do any- 
thing by which I can earn my subsistence." 

*' To do anything !" repeated Fouche, with some surprise, 
" then you would not refuse to be employed in my depart- 

*• Oh ! that is all that I ask !" cried Michel Perrin, his 
eyQ9 sparkling with joy. 

*' Undoubtedly you would acquire more money than 
yaor parish ever produced." 

** Is it possible ?" 
' ** Certainly ; men who resemble you are rather scarce." 
And Fouche fixed his eyes on the becoming figure of the 
pastor. " I know that you are very intelligent, and you 
can express yourself clearly and explicitly." 

'* It is certainly advantageous to have received a classcial 
education," said Michel, with a modest air, although he 
nras in fact highly gratified by the compliment. 

** Besides, I can put complete confidence in you, whilst 
with the generality " 

The door of the cabinet opened, and an usher informed 
the minister that the first consul required his presence at 
the Tuileries immediately. 

Fouche bundled a number of papers into & ^\\.^^\v;i 
with all the haste of a man wTio fears lo \o^ «u xsivKXiX^. 

220 Twenff/ Years' Recollections, 

" As to me, as to rae ?" said the poor pastor, who with 
terror beheld him preparing to leave without any definite 

** Hold,*' said the minister, writing hastily two lines on 
a scrap of paper, *' take this to Desmarest, chief of diyisicn." 
He then hurried to his carriage and drove away. 

The pastor had barely read these words, ** Desmarest U 
to employ Michel Perri.% and to pay him liberally^** when in 
the utmost delight, he proceeded to the oflSce of the func- 
tionary mentioned, and the order which he brought pro- 
cured his immediate admission. 

The citizen Desmarest, who appeared to him to assume 
more importance than the minister himself, inasmuch as 
he had not been his class-fellow, took the paper, read it, 
and without offering him a seat, asked him if he was the 
person named Michel Perrin. 

*' The same, citizen." 

" You have just left the minister ?" 

" Only this moment ; for we had chatted together a full 
half- hour, as two good friends would do who had not met 
for a considerable time." 

** Be seated, Citizen Perrin. Is it the minister's inten- 
tion that you are to correspond directly with him or with 

^ It would seem that in referring me to you, citizen.'* 

** As he has said nothing positive in this respect, it is 
with me you will have to do." 

" And when shall I commence ?" 

" Without delay ; for the minister, in directing me to 
pay you liberally, undoubtedly believed that there was need 
of your ability and zeal." 

** For my zeal I can fully answer," replied Michel, ** I 
hope that, with some little experience in the discharge of 
actual duty, my ability shall equal it." 

" I have no doubt of it, no doubt whatever. You have 

been sent to me by a man who is never mistaken in his 

estimate of individual capability. I shall enter your name 

on the list of those employed here. You shall have twenty 

francs per day, and your ^a^rcv^tvX, %\v^\ c.c>T£vcft«wife ^tous. 

this morning" 

Michel Peirin. 221 

At these words, the poor pastor had great difficulty in 
restraining an enthusiastic expression of gratitude for such 
treatment. He said that he longed to render himself suffi- 
ciently useful to justify the good opinion entertained of 
bim, and he asked the chief of the division to designate at 
once the duty he was eager to comnience. 

" For to-day, I have no particular directions to give you ; 
but you will come to me in two or three days. Mean- 
while, go through the city, traverse the promenades and 
other public places, dine in the restaurateurs, especially in 
the good restaurateurs." 

" Ah ! as for the prime restaurateurs," said Michel 
smiling, ^^ they shall not see me at all. I believe them to 
be far too costly for my purse." 

. " I understand," replied Desmarest ; " perhaps you are 
short of cash ; but I am going to pay you a fortnight in 
advance. Will that suffice ?" 

"For a long time, I assure you," answered the good 
pastor, full of gratitude, '* although I have really a scruple 
not having done any duty yet." 

^^ Bah ! it is almost always the usage here ; the inten- 
tions of the minister were certainly not to have you sent 
to the mean eating-houses." 

" What good angel has led me to these worthy people ?" 
said Michel Perrin to himself; and whilst he was express- 
ing reiterated thanks, the chief of division, having no time 
to lose, wrote an order for the cashier, and handed it to 
him, telling him to go and get his payment, and not to 
return before the following Monday, unless he had some- 
thing pressing to say. 

If the first thought of the pastor, when he found him- 
self the possessor of three hundred francs, tended towards 
God, the second was for Madeleine, and he could not 
dream of dining before he had written four pages to that 
good sister, and made his letter the bearer of half his trea- 
sure to Dijon. Then, with a light heart and mind at ease, 
he resolved to follow the advice of the Citizen Desmarest, 
and to enjoy a little portion of the Parisian pleasures. '* I 
have four good days before me up to '^LOTi^'a.'^ ^^ 'W ^?^> 
*'aad indeed I shall take some amus^m^tvt** 

222 Tuenty Years^ Recollections. 

In consequence, he betook himself to walk about the 
cdty. Paris, which up to this time had appeared sad, 
muddy, smoky, took all at once a cheerful appearance is 
his eyes, for a man whose mind is at ease, sees matteis 
very diflferently from the aspect they present to an afflicted 
person. He was not fatigued by visiting the beautifiil 
monuments, public buildings, bridges, gardens, and parks, 
and he imagined himself transported to fairyland. The 
Boulevards soon became his favorite promenade. Owiag 
to the variety of amusements which he found there, the 
good pastor could pass his entire day without experiencing 
one moment of ennui. The shops, equipages, puppet- 
shows attracting and occupying his attention ; not until 
night did he direct his steps to the Rue Mouffetard, de- 
lighted with the sights of the day, and greatly pleased at 
having been able to provide himself with two plentiful 
meals, an indulgence which he had for a long time pie* 
vious been unable to procure. 

When Monday arrived, Michel Perrin presented himself 
at the ministry of police rather anxious to ascertain 
whether the employment about to be assigned to him might 
not be beyond his capacity, 

" Ah ! 'tis you," said Desmarest, who appeared busily 
searching for a paper which he could not find on his desk. 
" Well ! where the devil have I thrust it ? What have 
you done these four days past ? " 

" I have run about the city as if I was only twenty 
years old," replied the pastor gaily. 

" Something infernal must have happened it,** said the 
chief of division, opening a drawer that he had not tried 
before. " All was quiet, I suppose," 

'* Ah ! perfectly quiet ! Every one I saw appeared, like 
myself, to be bent on amusements." 

" The malcontents are not giving up their designs for all 
that. (Could I have taken it home with me by mis- 

" Yes ; the discontented people. That is what a poor 
fellow told me yesterday in a chat which we had at the 
Boulevard du. Temple, and, m iail\i,l X\vwiV\3L^>w«»& w^a <j£ 
them himself,*' 

Michel Perrin. 23a 

The pastor stopped speaking for a few moments after 
these words. 

" Speak on ; go on," said Desmarest, who continued to 
rummage his papers ; ^' I am listening to you whilst I am 
looking for this cursed letter. What sort of man was this 

** He is a former garde du corps of the Comte d'Artois.** 

** Is he young? (This is enough to set one mad !)** 

" About my age." 

** (Ah ! J have found it at last.) Well, your former 
garde du corps ?" 

" He told me his entire history.'* 

« What a confiding man ! Well ? " 

'' It was a simple, plain story, and indeed I told him 
that I was a clergyman, that" 

** You told him that you had been a clergyman ?** ex- 
claimed Desmarest, laughing immoderately. 

** Undoubtedly," replied Michel, rather disconcerted. 

" All right, all right,** said the chief of division in a tone 
of approval. " What makes me laugh is, that if you had 
told me the same thing when you first came here, you 
would not have surprised me, and I should have believed 
you at once : I observe in you so much of the air of a man 
who has worn a priestly habit." 

" I have never been able to divest myself of that air, 
although it has often proved almost fatal to me^"* said 
Michel, with a sigh. 

** At present, on the contrary, it is most favorable ; your 
figure, your entire appearance inspires confidence.'* 

The pastor bowed to express his thanks. 

"And without doubt,*' continued Desmarest, '*the 
good Royalist of the Boulevard is living on hope like all 
his friends. He has some lively expectations of a happy 
change of his circumstances." 

" He has indeed, many." 

'* What do they depend on ?** 

** Ah ! I do not know. The first time that he saw me 
this man could not tell me all his affairs." 

**Thi8 is very natural," said tih^ Q\i\^^ o^ ^v^Ss^^^x, 
**Have you arranged to see him agam^'' 

224 Twenty Years* EecolUctions. 

^ We have settled to have a game of chess one of these 
days, provided I may be free to return to the Cafe 

" And what prevents you ?" 

" If the business which you will appoint for me to-day 
requires my entire time.*' 

**I have no business to appoint for you," answered 
Desmarest, ** but as I am greatly burdened myself at pre- 
sent, you may return to this matter or to any other until 
Thursday ; come to me on that day." 

Michel Perrin, not wishing to be troublesome, hastened 
to salute his chief and to leave the office, but not without 
being greatly surprised that they paid him so liberally for 
doing nothing. Nevertheless, feeling certain that ulti- 
mately he would be set to work, he laughed as he walked 
on the quay. ** Three more holidays," he said, ''andiii 
faith we'll enjoy them!" And he resumed the life of a 
Parisian cockney.* 

The following Thursday, after having waited near two 
hours in the ante-chamber with some men of very sinister 
aspect, the pastor was admitted to citizen Desmarest, who 
smiled graciously, saying — 
"Well, what news?" 

" News ! " exclaimed Michel quite astonished. 
" Yes ; when you come here undoubtedly you must 
have something to tell me." 

" In fact, citizen, as this is Thursday, I have come to 
know if it is to-day that you desire to commence employ- 
ing me." 

" No, a hundred times no ! I have already told you to 
take your own course, to go through Paris like a man who 
thinks only of amusing himself and seeing everything." 

" I do nothing else through the length of the day," said 
the pastor laughing. 

** Well, that is the minister's intention and mine ; have 
you settled your game of chess ? Have you again met 
your garde du corps ?" 

• The word in the OT\g,ma.\ \e « Vi«Awvi." 

Michel Perrin, 225 

" No.** 

**The devil!" said Desmarest, who at that time was 
specially looking after the Royalists ; " but at least you 
know his name?" 

** He never told it to me." 

The chief of division shrugged his shoulders, smiling. 

" You have let him see that you were too knowing for 
him/' • 

" Quite the contrary," replied Michel, *' for I told him 
at once that my ideas were very simple." 

" I am beginning to think so too," muttered Desmarest ; 
then to terminate the interview, he bowed and added, 
** let me see you on Monday." 

" Certainly," said the pastor to himself, as he took the 
direction of the Palais-Royal with the intention of dining 
at the caf& de Foi; "certainly if this continues I can 
congratulate myself on having obtained a most agreeable 
position. As long as ray business consists in waiting on 
my chief twice in the week, I run no risk of losing my 
employment through incapacity." 

When he entered on the following Monday, he had 
waited a very long time until a number of persons passed, 
who stated that they were ordered to attend. 

** The usher says that you have been waiting for six or 
seven hours," said the citizen Desmarest. ** I had some 
important business to transact, or you should have been 
admitted sooner ; for I suppose that you have something 
pressing to tell me." 

*' Nothing whatever, citizen," quietly replied the pastor, 
*' I always come very early, that you may have me at hand, 
if you wish to have me called." 

** It is certain that you are admirably punctual, citizen 
Perrin ; I said so yesterday to the minister," 

" I hope that in this respect you shall never have to 
reproach me," replied the pastor, bowing. 

" You pass your days in your chamber," said Desmarest. 

" Me ! I run like a mountaineer ; yesterday 1 did more 
than two leagues on the flagways of Paris." 

" And jou haT«e seen nothing, lieaid 'ho^yel^-^otl^'^ ^ 
jroiir attention and mine ?" 

226 Twenty Teari^ Recollections. 

" Ah !" said the pastor laughing ; " it requires so 1 
to attract mj attention and to enable me to pass the t 
that you would not wish to lose your time listenin, 
such trifles." 

" Well I be it so," said the citizen Desmarest, w 
astonishment had reached its acme ; " Good day, re 
to-morrow, I request of you." 

Michel Perrin had scarcely closed the door of the cab: 
when the chief of division rang and obtained the immec 
attendance of one of the fnouchards or detectives who ' 
in the ante-chamber. 

" Follow the man in the brown great-coat who has 
left me," said he ; " follow him throughout the day, 
come to report to me to-morrow morning." 

Until late in the evening the poor pastor could 
move a foot or hand, or speak a word without a note h 
made of it by the clever spy who had become his shac 
so that on the next day, when he received the ord< 
euter the cabinet of Desmarest, the latter knew better 
he did himself all that he had said or done the prece 

" Now," thought the chief of division, " unless 1 
deaf, blind, or dumb, he will not be silent this morni 
and desiring him to be seated — " Come," said he, * 
are about, I hope, to give me an accoimt of yester 

The good pastor was always somewhat surprised a 
interest which his chief seemed to take in his actio 
movements ; he replied, with an air of astonishment- 

" My business of yesterday ! I passed my time, 
our last interview, in nearly the same manner as I p 
all the other days since our first meeting. In the mo: 
I walked to the Tuileries ; in the evening I strolled o 

"I am not asking about your acts or movemc 
interrupted Desmarest, " but about what you were al 

"Oh I nothing new," replied Michel I'errin; " 
beginning to know all these places as well as I d 
own pocket" 

Michel Perrin. 227 

'^This man cannot be of a sane mind,'' said Desmarest 
to himself. Then taking patience^- 

''Do me the favor of telling me where you dined 
yesterday, citizen Perrin.** 

'' At a restaurateur's in the Palais-Hoyal/' replied the 
pastor, whom this kind of interrogatory surprised to the 

" And afterwards ?" 

'' I went to take my coffee at the cafe du Caveau.'' 

** And whilst you were taking your coffee, what passed 
there ? I beg of you to tell me." 

" Oh I nothing that I know.'' 

** What ! did you not remark three young fellows who 
were talking just beside you, whose table was next to 
yours ? " 

"Stay, stay; I recollect now that there were indeed, 
just beside me, some gentlemen; I cannot say whether 
three or four, but I know they had a bowl of punch." 

*' And they used most horrible language regarding the 
First Consul," added the chief of division with anger; 
'' they even went so far as to threaten his life I" 

'' As- for that, I am completely uninformed on the sub- 
ject, inasmuch as, having observed two or three times that 
these gentlemen lowered their voices when I turned my 
head towards them, I moved off to a table farther from 
them. I did not wish to have even the appearance of 
listening to them, you understand." 

"By my faith, this is too bad!" exclaimed Desmarest. 
"What occupation do you think that you have at the 
ministry of police ? " 

"Ah !" said the pastor, quickly, " that is exactly what 
I have been desiring to know during the last fifteen 

" Eh, zoimds I you are a spy for the police I" 

"A mouchard?" 

" A mouchard I " 

The pastor bounded from his seat, his cheeks flushed, 
his lips quivering. ** Monsieur I — But it is not to you 
that I have to speak," said he, hastily rushing from th^ 

228 Twenty Years^ Recollections, 

He ran to the door of the minister, and wished to have 
it opened, 

"The minister has gone out,*' answered one of the 
ushers, laughing in his face. 

^' I shall wait for him ; I shall wait the whole daj if it 
be necessary,'* 

** Wait for him, then, in the street," said the w^xsty 
" for you cannot remain here." 

" Be it so," replied the poor pastor, resolved to place 
himself before the gate of the hotel, but he had barely 
crossed the courtyard, when Fouch^, on his return, alighted 
from his carriage. 

Michel Perrin did not hesitate to rush towards the 

** I beg of you to hear me for a minute, citizen minift* 
ter," said he, in an altered tone. 

Fouch^, although somewhat surprised at the sight d 
this excited applicant, recognised Michel Perrin, and per- 
mitted him to follow him. 

" Well ! what now?" asked he, when they were alone. 
*' Have you discovered some conspiracy, to be thus almost 
beside yourself?'* 

"I have discovered that you have made a jest of the 
friend of your youth," replied the good pastor, with a 
courage derived from resentment. " Poor as I am, and 
powerftil as you are, I would never wish to have been 
subjected to such treatment." 

" May I die if I know what you are speaking about,** 
replied Fouch6, looking closdy at him to ascertain if he 
was in his right senses. 

" Have you not issued your orders to your citizen Des- 
marest ?" 

'* Undoubtedly ; he has even told me," added Foueh^, 
laughing, '* that you earned your money very badly." 

"Ah ! my deepest regret is having received that sum 
of money, for unfortunately I am unable to return it : I 
have sent the half to my poor sister Madeleine. I have 
remaining at most only" 

" Eh J who says a word about your returning monc^, 

Michd Perrin. 229^ 

you fool ? As long as I choose to employ you, what has 
Desmarest to say about it ? '' % 

" To employ me ! to employ me as a spy I *' cried 
Michel, reddening with indignation. 

'* Methinks your scruples arise rather late, when you 
have been attached to the police for fifteen days,'^ replied 

'^ It was only on this day that I discovered it,^' cried the 
poor pastor. 

" What 1 did you not know it ? Was it only to-day 
you ascertained your function ? " said the minister, as, 
struck by the comic tendency of the matter, he indulged 
iu great laughter. 

'* I should never have supposed it,'* answered Michel 
Perrin, proudly ; " your man told me of it." 

^' It was a fortunate thing that he atforded jou such an 
interesting disclosure," said Fouchd, who vainly endea* 
voured to resume his gravity ; " but, in fact, Michel, did 
you not come to me, stating that you were dying of hun- 
ger, and diat you were resolved to do anything to provide 
the means of supporting life ? " 

** Certainly ; I would have agreed to sweep your apart- 
ments, to carry the fuel for your stoves, to do everything 
that might be done without forfeiting reputation and los- 
ing self-respect." And, in saying these words, the poor 
pastor raised his fine head, which fretting and privation 
Lad already covered with snowy locks. 

Honor exercises an influence even upon those who have 
tampered with their own. Fouche discontinued his laugh- 
ter, and approaching his class-fellow — 

" There has been a misunderstanding, Michel," said he, 
taking his hand ; '^ let us forget this, and continue good 
friends, especially," he added, '• as I have most delightful 
news for you : it is that they are about to restore your 
parish to you." 

*' Another hoax," said Michel Perrin, shrugging his 
shoulders, with an air of incredulity. 

** No ; on my faith. Public worship is re-established. 
You know, or perhaps you do not kuoyf, tifciaX Ci^^^^ca^ 

230 Twenty Years^ Recollections. 

Gronsalvi was here for ^considerable time, to arrange tbe 
basis of a concordat \mh the Pope. This concoidat is 
signed ; the First Consul communicated it yesterday to his 
Council of State." 

" Ah ! if I again saw my good peasants ! If I returned 
to my manse with Madeleine \** cried the good pastor, his 
eyes sparkling with joy ; *> but," added he, " perhaps the 
parish will be given to another ? " 

'<I shall take special care that it shall not," replied 
the minister, " Your parish was in Burgundy, I be- 
lieve ? " 

" Just beside Dijon. I had it for a year.** 

" You shall receive news from me very soon ; but, in 
the meantime, I advise you to return to your sister. Paris 
is full of people too crafty for you ; and as you must 'live^ 
continued Fouch^, "take this rouleau of twenty-five 

" No, no ; I shall take no more money," said the good 
pastor, pushing aside the hand of the minister. 

** You must take it. You do not imagine, I hope, that 
this would be a recompense for the services you have ren- 
dered," said Fouche, laughing heartily. *' It is given to 
you by me for yourself, for your sister." 

" Well, be it so," replied Michel, greatly softened. " I 
cannot reject the gift of an honest man," 

Fouche stifled a sigh. " Adieu," said he ; " return to 

The following year, Michel Perrin had resumed his 
clerical functions ; and Madeleine again became the lady 
and mistress of the manse. The peace, the comfort, the 
security for the future which they enjoyed, seemed to be 
enhanced by the recollection of past sufferings. 

If Madeleine, in whom there was a little vanity, re- 
marked to her brother, when returning from church, that 
all the peasants took off their hats — 

" Yes, yes," the pastor answered in a low voice, and 
'''^ith a smile, *'Thk worthy fellows are not at ALL 


ThB Count or Convict: Which f 231 

CHAPTER ifxill. 


I NOW proceed to the narration of the other case which I 
received from M, Hubert, the facts of which are far more 
extraordinary than any of the exuberant fictions presented 
in the pages of romance. 

In the early part of May, 1818, the Place Vendome was 
occupied by detachments from the garrison of Paris, for 
the purpose of effecting certain military requirements and 
arrangements. They were under the command of the 
Comte de Pontis de Sainte-Helene, colonel of the 72nd 
Legion. Amidst a brilliant cortege, he appeared, bearing 
on his breast the insignia of officer of the Legion of 
Honor, Chevalier de Saint-Louis, and also the Spanish 
orders of Alcantara and Saint-Wladimir. One of the 
spectators, meanly attired, and of rather sinister appear- 
ance, attempted to approach the distinguished officer, but 
he was unceremoniously repelled by those to whom the 
duty of keeping the ground had been assigned. He 
found no difficulty, however, in ascertaining that the resi- 
dence of the Comte was in the Rue Basse-Saint-Denis; 
and when the military duties of the day had been fulfilled, 
and the gallant nobleman returned to his house, he was 
apprised that a stranger was waiting in the ante-chamber 
on some affairs which he declared to be of paramount im- 
portance. The Count proceeded to the apartment, and 
was there accosted in rather familiar terms. 

" You must remember me ; I am Darios, your former 
comrade of the chain. I bear you no ill-will, and do not 
wish to take any advantage of you, but you are rich and I 
am miserably destitute. Give me your succour, relieve 
my necessities, and you may depend on my prudence and 

The Comte de Pontis de Sainte-Helene affected to treat 
this intruder as an impostor or madman. He summoned 
his attendants, and had Darios at once ex.^ell^dfi:^\SL\2ck& 

232 Twenty Ytcari EecoUecttons. 

premises. The latter, in the highest state of exasperation 
at such treatment, be%)k himself to the office of the 
Minister of the Interior, and having eventually succeeded 
in obtaining an audience of the Due Decazes, declared to 
the minister that the Comte de Pontis de Sainte-Helene 
was no other than Pierre Coignard, who, on the 18th 
October, 1800, had been condemned by the criminal 
tribunal of the department of the Seine to fourteen yean 
of hard labor, for various robberies committed by noctur- 
nal housebreaking, and also by means of false keys. That 
in about five years he had managed to elude 'the vigilance 
of the prison authorities of Toulon, and had escaped from 
the Bagne. The Due Decazes was completely amazed at 
this statement, and inasmuch as it was made by one who 
acknowledged himself to be a convicted criminal, he at 
first considered it to be false and malicious. Other 
reasons, of a political nature, made him determine to 
avoid any personal participation in an inquiry resulting 
from such averments ; and as the imputations were directed 
against a person in a high military position, he referred 
the matter to General Despinoy, who commanded the 
division of the army to which the accused belonged. The 
co-operation of the police was obtained, and the cele- 
brated Yidocq was brought into requisition. It was fully 
ascertained that Colgnard, after escaping from Toulon, 
had made his way to Catalonia, in Spain, where he 
formed an intimate acquaintance with a young female, 
named Maria Kosa. She constituted the entire domestic 
establishment of the veritable Comte de Pontis de Sainte* 
Helene, who was a French emigrant, and of an ancient 
family belonging to Soissons. He had been in the 
Spanish service, and had distinguished himself in South 
America. Having returned to Europe in broken health, 
be was reduced to great poverty by the inability of the 
Spanish government to meet the claims of their depen- 
dants, or even to make any effectual resistance against the 
French invasion, which was then in very active progress. 
Death relieved him from his privations, and Coigsard 
induced Maria Eosa to become his accomplice in assuming 

The Count or Convict : Which f 233 

the designation of the deceased nobleman. The family 
papers and pedigree were made available by the spurious 
Comte and Comtesse, and Coignard proceeded to join the 
irregular troops or guerilla bands, which were under the 
orders of Mina, to whom he introduced himself as a 
French nobleman, exiled as a legitimist, and anxious to 
combat to the utmost the upstart who had usurped the 
throne of his country. He either received, or subsequently 
pretended that he received, the orders of Alcantara and 
Saint- Wladimir during his time of service under Mina, but 
lie did not remain long in the Spanish ranks, and alleged 
that ill health rendered his retirement unavoidable. In a 
short time, however, he presented himself to Soult, and 
implored to be received into the army of his native country. 
He continued in a military capacity, fortunate in escaping 
the casualities of war, and in gradually attaining higher 
rank, until the departure of Napoleon for Elba, and then, 
free from all suspicions of his false pretensions, he pro- 
fessed to belong to the andenne noblesse, and to regard 
the restoration of the Bourbon dynasty as the vindication 
of a right and the realization of a blessing. When 
Napoleon returned, Louis the Eighteenth betook himself 
to Ghent, and the Comte de Pontis de Sainte-Helene con- 
ciliated his confidence and esteem by becoming a partici- 
pator of his short exile. He was basking in courtly favor, 
when his former " comrade of the chain" recognised him 
in the Place Vendome, and when his prudence, nay, even 
his instinctive caution, so completely deserted him that 
he effected to treat a statement which he knew to be per- 
fectly true, as the threats of an impostor or the ravings of 
a lunatic. It is highly probable that a small pension, paid 
weekly or monthly, to Darios would have ensured his 

But in reference to this most extraordinary culprit, it 
remains. to be mentioned that the police discovered and 
proved before the the Cour (T assises de la Seine, on the 
10th July, 1819, that Coignard, even after he had attained 
to rank and opulence, was in communication with several 
of the most accomplished robbers of PaiU, ^sv<i \\i'dX V^ 

234 Twenty Tears* Recollections. 

aided them by using tHe opportunities derived from his 
intimacy with persons of wealth and proprietors of costly 
mansions, to ascertain where their money and plate were 
kept, and at what time the property might be pillaged 
with the least risk of interruption or detection. When he 
found the proofs of his past and of his continued delin- 
quencies accumulated beyond any possibility of resisting 
an adverse judgment, he attempted to escape, and on be- 
ing arrested, he discharged several pistol shots at the 
police officers, by which two of them were dangerously 
wounded and permanently disabled. Amongst the asso- 
ciates of his aristocratic career, there was far less indigna- 
tion expressed at his robberies or dishonest proclivities, 
than at his audacious assumption of ^xalted rank, and 
his intrusion amongst a class, the members of which 
would evince greater lenity to the opening of a banker^s 
coffers by means of false keys, than to the attainment of 
admission to a courtly circle by a pretended title of nobi- 
lity. Conclusive evidence having been adduced of the 
identity of Coignard as an escaped convict, and also of 
his subsequent complicity in several criminal transactions, 
he was remitted to Toulon, there to be imprisoned for 
life and kept to hard labor. When he left the Bicetre, 
on the 24th July, 1819, on the galley chain, an enormous , 
crowd assembled to witness his departure, and his demea- 
nour was remarked as indicating neither despondency 
nor contrition. In the towns through which he passed, 
he excited the utmost curiosity. The false Comtesse, 
Maria Rosa, proceeded to Toulon, and subsisting on what- 
ever she had been able to save from the wreck of her 
previous fortunes, she continued firmly attached to the 
wretched Coignard. She visited him whenever permitted, 
and afforded him every attention that the rules of the 
prison allowed. She died in 1829, and he survived her 
only until the succeeding spring, 

1 think that in laying before my readers the details of 

this romantic reality, I have given them an instance of 

fact being far more extraordinary than fiction. The ma- 

ierials in the narrativis last related, ate x^cA. ^xxitible for 

The Fawn's Escape. 285 

being woven into one piece in the loom of fiction. Those 
who would make a Count the hero or principal character 
of an imaginative production, would shrink from choosing 
him amongst the galley slaves of Toulon. Those who 
would make a convict a prominent actor in any ideal 
drama, would consider it too ridiculous to dignify him 
with a title immediately after his escape from penal servi- 

As to the memoirs derived from the archives of the 
Police of Paris, a person disposed to make selections 
would have two difficulties to encounter ; namely, where 
to commence and where to conclude his extracts. I may 
mention that there are some which certainly should not 
be presented for public perusal, and which I would totally 
abstain from translating ; for although I might have no 
intention of publishing them, I would not leave their de- 
tails in manuscript. They might vitiate, but could not 
improve. I could not, in these pages, insert all that I 
consider amusing or instructive, although perfectly un- 
objectionable, without extending this publication to an 
unusual amplitude, and causing the result of my Parisian 
visit, comparatively to monopolise it. I have translated 
every incident in the memoirs which I felt confident of 
being free from impropriety, and perhaps, at a future 
period, I shall venture to submit them to public considera- 
tion. At present I shall content myself by submitting 
two narratives to my readers, and then, with a few re- 
marks on some of the novels of Alexandre Dumas, and 
with one or two of my personal recollections, I shall leave 
Paris for Dublin, until an interval of ten years has elapsed, 
when my acquaintance with the French capital shall be 
renewed as satisfactorily, I hope, to my readers as it was 
to myself. 

THE fawn's escape. 

The tale on which I am entering is designated in the 
memoirs, " The Fawn's Escape," and the applicability of 
that title w'ih appear when the reader aciVve^ ^X \}tL<^\>^^^ 

236 Twenty Tear^ Recollections. 

Park, (Paix5-aux-Cerfs.) The preliminary observations 
were certainly not written on any previous edition to that 
of 1838, when the Orleans branch of the Bourbon family 
was in the ascendency. 

Philippe Auguste de Sainte-Foix, Chevalier d'Arc, was 
the grandson of Louis the Fourteenth* The career of this 
person, during the succeeding reign, powerfully illustrates 
the fearful state into which society had merged, and 
proves that when the door is opened for the entry of one 
vice, several others are likely to gain admission. It is 
worthy of notice that the profligacy of the higher classes 
during the reign of the depraved Louis the Fifteenth, was 
fully equal to the ferocity that overthrew the throne of 
his successor, and, on the ruins of all civil and religious 
institutions, established a reign of Terror. The people wit- 
nessed all the precepts of divine or moral authority not 
only violated but openly ridiculed ; and we cannot feel 
much surprise at the utter disregard of all the claims put 
forward by the higher classes, when we recollect that 
they had long ceased to possess the slightest self-respect. 
The robes of nobility were not torn to rags by the wild and 
furious passions of a fierce democracy, until long after 
they had been trailed in the mire by their aristocratic 
owners. But we are not . proceeding to write political 
considerations on the causes or effects of revolutions ; we 
only invite attention to the peculiar state of society at the 
period to which our tale refers, and leaving the reader to 
reflect for himself upon its consequences. We return to 
the chevalier d'Arc. 

An illustrious though illegitimate origin might be ex- 
pected to elevate his mind, render him susceptible of high 
feelings, and capable of noble deeds ; but in him it only 
inspired a ridiculous vanity and unmeasured inpudence. 
Perverted in his youth by the vicious philosophy of the 
time, he followed its abominable maxims to the letter, 
and speedily compelled all who had any respect for 
themselves, to repulse his approaches and repudiate hia 
intimacy. He consequently soon became admissible only 
to those haunts which were open to ^li:^ ^^^t^on. who had 
a title to disgrace and a swoxd to caiiy. 

Tfie Fawns Escape, 237 

On Teaching manhood, he entered into possession of an 
estate in the vicinity of St. Cloud, which had been be- 
queathed to him by his father, the Comte de Toulouse, 
one of the sons of Madame de Montespan. Being of a 
handsome person, and of insinuating though frivolous 
inanners, he attracted the notice of a young widow, who 
had been, soon after her marriage, bereaved of a very old 
and very wealthy husband, for whose death she was pre- 
Tented from becoming utteriy inconsolable by the acquisi- 
tion of a very ample fortune. The chevalier perceived 
that to the fair widow he was not an indifferent object^ 
and, without the slightest intention of ultimate matrimony, 
he professed the most boundless love. He was warmly re- 
ceived, vows were interchanged, and to encourage his 
advances, the widow occasionally spoke of her extensive 
possessions in different parts of the kingdom ; but far 
from insinuating that she wished to reserve any portion 
of her property from her future husband, she generally 
managed to introduce a favorite maxim — '* That between 
two united hearts there should be a community of in- 

The chevalier dined at the widow's mansion ; the enter- 
tainment was superb, and the table was covered with 
plate, with the exception of the soups, which were served 
in porcelain. Affecting the familiarity of a lover, the 
chevalier insisted that his fair hostess should permit him 
to supply this deficiency, and on the following day two 
-splendid soup tureens were sent to Madame, with a billet 
dauXy to which the dear, fond creature attached more 
Talue than to the handsome present it accompanied. 

In about a fortnight after, the chevalier took an oppor- 
tunity of mentioning that he was unpleasantly circum- 
stanced through the oversight of his house steward, who 
had neglected to have his plate brought from a chateau 
in Picardy, where he had passed the previous autumn. 
" Dear friend," he added, *' I am to entertain to-morrow 
the Comte Ecouy and the Due de Eohan, and owing to 
this fatality I find myself unable to make an appearance 
even respectable. Will you lend me -wYiaXevet ^q>Ql ^"aa. 
spare, and thus save my credit with my ^<^^\.^T' 

238 Twenty Yeari EecoUections. 

Charmed at an opportunity of obliging her well-beloved, 
the widow reserved not even a spoon, all was sent with 
alacrity ; but in two days she received a letter enclosing 
the duplicates of her plate, and containing the assurance, 
that he should never have made it available for his 
necessities but for the recollection of her own sentiment, 
^'That between two united hearts there should be a 
community of interests." 

Impoverished by his profligacy, he petitioned the King. 
Louis the Fifteenth recollected him as a playmate of hu 
youth, and sent him a draft on the treasurer of his house- 
hold for eight thousand livres. As the amoimt was 
specified in figures, the chevalier added a cipher, whicb 
augmented the royal generosity to an unreasonable 
amount. The King was urged to compel the restitution 
of the sum thus obtained, and his majesty replied, ^* In 
my situation I cannot pay too dearly for a useful lesson. 
It will teach me, for the future, to economise less the 
letters of the alphabet.'* 

Afterwards the Chevalier d' Arc became one of the most 
indefatigable purveyors for the Parc-aux-Cerfs ; and in 
reference to this part of his life, we have to notice the 
following, which is romantic in the extreme, and is also 
free from any details of an immoral tendency, rather a 
rare feature in any adventure connected with the Paro- 

The chevalier being admitted, by reason of the reputa- 
tion of his father and his consanguinity to the Due de 
Penthievre, to an intimacy with some respectable gentle- 
men of Querci sojourning at Paris, whither they had come 
to solicit oflicial employment, or seek royal favor, was 
not long in remarking the exquisite beauty of the only 

daughter of one of them. Mademoiselle de Pal * was 

beloved by a young oflicer of musketeers, of honorable 
family and high character, every way worthy of her hand, 
and they deferred the marriage only until the realization 

* This abbreyiation strictly copied from the memoirs, appears 
to be intended to conceal the complete deslg^uaUon of the yooQg 
Jadjr and her family. 

The Fawn's Escape. 239 

of their hopes from courtly favor would leave the family in 
more easy circumstances. 

But a demon entered their residence when they admitted 
the Chevalier d'Arc. He applied himself to stimulate the 
soul of the Comte de Pa l , father of Mademoiselle 
Helene, with suggestions of guilty ambition, until the 
foolish but obstinate old man determined to effect the 
admission of his daughter into the Parc-aux-Cerfs, But 
how to procure the concurrence of the two brothers of the 
old gentleman, one Lieutenant-Colonel the Baron de 

M y the other an abb^, and grand vicar of the Bishop of 

Tulle. These gentlemen, high in their sense of honor, 
and proud in their family recollections, would scorn to 
see fortune coming through so vile an avenue. How to 
reconcile a virtuous girl to her own degradation. Above 
aU, how to dispose of her lover. 

To make an open attack was impossible. Meanwhile, 
the old dotard of a count, infatuated by the suggestions 
which the Chevalier d'Arc continually whispered, fancied 
himself a minister of state, destined to save France from 
every peril by the guidance of his sage advice ; moreover, 
he saw in his brother, the baron, a marshal of France, and 
in his younger brother, an archbishop or cardinal. This 
picture enchanted him, and instead of kicking his infamous 
tempter out of doors, he listened to no other counsel but his. 
The virtue of his daughter became a chimera and a trifle 
compared with the advantages which must result to the 
entire community from an influence acquired over the 
yielding mind of a libertine monarch. 

The chevalier, on his part, had committed himself in the 
affair beyond retreat. The King had heard something of 
it. His valet, Lebel, and the portly lady, the directress of 
the Parc-aux-Cerfs, were impatiently awaiting the appear- 
ance of this eighth wonder of the world. They worried the 
intermeddling chevalier, and he soon concluded that the 
palladium of the royal protection should be secured as soon 
as possible, and by all possible means. He and the father 
of the young lady had recourse to stratagem. They lived 
in Paris in the Bue des Moulins. One morning^ undec 

240 Twenty Tear^ Recollections. 

the pretext of preferring a request to M. de CBoiseTi^ 
lately installed minister, the Conate de Pal , his daugh- 
ter, and the Chevalier d'Arc proceeded to Versailles. On 
their arrival, they enquired the hour at which the minister 
received public applicants, and finding that there was 
some time to spare, the chevalier proposed a promenade 
through the town. The suggestion was approved by the 
father, and the daughter acquiesced. 

They take their way through a lonely lane. The long 
wall, by which it is bounded on one side, is pierced by a 
door which happens to be open, and discloses a view of a 
beautiful garden. They ask of a domestic who is passing 
if they can be permitted to walk in this delightful place. 
The reply is affirmative, and they enter ; and at the end of 
a shady avenue, they meet a lady. 

" Oh I it is the Marchioness d'Allinvilliers." 

" Oh ! the much-esteemed Chevalier d'Arc ! — ^what a 
pleasure !*• 

^' I am enchanted, madame, at this instance of good 
fortune in meeting you. I presume to present to you the 
Comte de Pal , my most intimate friend, and Made- 
moiselle, his daughter." 

High compliments are reciprocated. The Marchioness, 
so luckily encountered, assumes the guidance of the party. 
They admire the beauty and magnificence of the place. 
At last they arrived at a kiosque, erected in the purest 
oriental style, and they find a repast of the choicest 
pastry, fruits, liqueurs, wines, and iced water. Mademoi- 
selle Helene de Pal is pressed to eat and drink. She 
complies ; and after having taken refreshment, a sudden 
stupor overcomes her, and she yields to a somnolency 
totally irresistible. 

On awaking, she is astonished to find herself in a 
sumptuous bed. She is informed of all that has passed 
by the Marchioness d'Alliuvilliers, whom she recognize^ 
and by whom she is affectionately embraced. A letter is 
placed in her hands from her father, in whicb she is in- 
formed that he has not been able to refuse to so kind a 
iadj^ the care of his daughter during the period of his stay 

TJie FawfCs Escape. 241 

in the cjipital. Hfe will see her at every visit to Versailles^ 

and Mademoiselle de Pal will be more comfortably 

and respectably circumstanced than she could be in fur- 
nished lodgings with him. 

This had a great semblance of truth ; and although 
certain precautions and restraints appeared extraordinary, 
the younir lady was so perfectly innocent as to entertain 
no suspicion of the infamous nature of the mansion in 
which she was placed. She had not acquired a knowledge 
of the character of the Chevalier d'Arc, which was very 
different from that of provincial gentlemen, and she had 
not the most remote idea of the functions which he exer- 
cised at court. In the evening, she was induced to enter 
the saloon. There, to her surprise, she recognized the 
King, in a gentleman who stood with his back to. the 

A conversation ensued, in which his Majesty used much 
gallant and polite language, and in which he stated that 
he came there without any ceremony, as the Marchioness 
was his foster-sister. On his retiring, they surrounded 
the young lady, and exclaimed that she should be proud of 
the distinguished attentions of the King. In short, every 
allurement which can be addressed to vanity was tried on 
one whose mind was guided by sentiments of a higher 
nature. Helene, far from acquiescing in the views of the 
depraved creatures of both sexes, with whom she was 
associated, regarded all their suggestions with undisguised 
repugnance. The same evening, a royal page brought 
her a porcelain vase, containing a bouquet of natural 
flowers, upon which appeared a butterfly formed of spark- 
ling gems. Upon the handles were fastened two diamond 
ornaments, shaped like pears, of very large dimensions 
and surpassing brilliancy. These were accompanied by 
necklaces composed of precious stones, remarkable for 
splendor, purity, and magnitude. 

Ecstacy seemed to pervade the circle. Mademoiselle de 
Pal , in a firm and deliberate tone, apprised the Mar- 
chioness, that, at an early hour on the succeeding day^ 
she wished to return to her patexnaY \ioms:. l^'Kt \isA^ 

242 Twenty Years^ RecoUectiona. 

the abb^, would undertake to have the present returned. 
There was an outcry — 

*' You darling, to quit me ! Ah ! you wicked one ! what 
ingratitude ! Moreover, how could I expose you, lonely 
and unprotected ? I would not entrust you to anyone ; 
my responsibility is pledged. You will remain until the 
next visit of your father, the Comte." 

Constrained to yield to this specious resistance, Made- 
moiselle de Pal retired to her chamber, and there 

wrote to her father an account of all that had passed, and 
urged the imperative necessity of immediately flying from 
the gallantry of the King. The poor child comforted her- 
self in the expectation of a prompt succour from her father. 
What would have been her feelings if she had witnessed 
the transports of joy in which the old gentleman indiJged 
at the apparent certainty of accomplishing his designs? 
It was a complete delirium ! Eepeatedly he embraced the 
Chevalier d'Arc, whose pockets he replenished with money. 
Then taking his pen, he hastened to reply that it appeared 
premature to impute evil designs to any person ; that the 
Eling could have no bad intentions. Finally, they owed 
his Majesty so much love and respect, that all other feel- 
ings should be absorbed in reference to him. 

The conclusion of this letter plunged the virtuous gill 
in despair. After two more days, she received a second 
visit from the King, and was offered homage of a more 
marked character — the most costly stuffs, and yarioiu 
other articles of such enormous value as could not be 
authorized by simple gallantry or innocent admiration. 

Mademoiselle de Pal , distracted, overwhelmed, saw 

herself abandoned by those on whom the very feelings of 
nature should have imposed the duty of protecting her in- 
nocence. She did not accuse her father directly, but her 
mind was beset with frightful suspicions. 

One morning, at an early hour, the Marchioness not 
having left her bed-chamber, a girl, who filled some very 
subordinate station in the establishment, came into the 
apartment of Mademoiselle, in the absence of the femmi' 
de^chambre who had been assigned to her. This damsely 

The Fawn's Escape. i^i 

entering cautiously, informed Helene that a handsome lad, 
in her father's livery, had brought a letter which he would 
deliver only to herself in person. 

Too much tormented not to distinguish any favorable 
circumstance in her unhappy situation — knowing, morfs« 
over, that her father had not permitted his two old servants 
to bring his family livery to Paris — she was only too ready 
to take advantage of the opportunity afforded by the early 
Lour ; consequently, she consented to receive the envoy. 

An exclamation of surprise and delight escaped her. 
It was her lover, the Vicomte de Benavent Rhodes, a 
gentleman of very high extraction, quite ready to believe 
that his fathers constituted a younger and distant branch 
of the sovereign counts of Rhodes. He was a black 
musketeer, young, brave, and thoroughly daring. The 

Comte de Pal , a man without prudence or reserve, 

had permitted his brother to discover his secret, and even 
to become acquainted with the letter of his daughter. 
This worthy ecclesiastic, indignant at the projects of his 
brother, lost not a moment before informing the person 
most interested in defeating the base plots of the royal 
seraglio. The family was distracted, but the circum- 
stances required delicate management. They had to deal 
with the diflSculty of struggling against the proceedings of 
an obstinate old man, who found historic sanctions for 
his conduct in the innumerable pollutions of the Court. 
The great evil consisted in the abuse of an acknowledged 
power, the authority of a parent. Besides where were 
they to find Helene ? He kept the secret as soon as he 
found his family in revolt against his projects. The em- 
barrassment was great, but the Vicomte de Benavent, 
better informed than the respectable abbe, at once sur- 
mised all that passed ; how, owing to the villainy of tha 
Chevalier d'Arc, the fair Helene was already in the infa- 
mous precincts of the Parc-aux-Cerfs. He wished to go 
himself, and warn his mistress of the dangers by which 
she was surrounded. 

Certain that he could never penetrate into this place if 
he went in his ordinary attire, for habitual watchfulc 

244 TwerUy Year^^ Recollections, 

interdicted the entry of the gardes-du-corps, the offiden- 
mix-gardes^ and the musketeers, grey or black, as persons 
of suspicious reputation amongst those who had the guar- 
dianship of youth and beauty, the lover flattered himself 
that he would deceive the " Argus" by assuming a livery, 
and presenting himself at an early hour. 

He was not wrong in his conjectures ; and by choosing 
the early hour he gained the assistance of the poor female 
drudge who introduced him. Once in presence of Made- 
moiselle de Pal , he kissed her hand, and placed 

in it a letter from the abb^ in the following terms : — 

** Mt i>earest Niece, 

"I write to you in the affliction of a broken heart Your 
poor father has been scandalously led astray by a knave, a swindler, 
a man without an honourable idea, and destitute of faith and 
morals. Dear niece, are you aware that you are now in the Parc- 
aux-Cerfs? Who detains you there? The abominable directress 
of that polluted mansion. Your ruin is resolved on. I trust that 
God will not abandon you, and that this affair may terminate 
without crime or scandal. Consult with the Vicorate (M . de Bena- 
vent.) He is regarded by me as my future nephew. If your 
plans should not succeed, then God will guide the steps of one of 
•His ministers, and should I find it necessary to approach the King, 
I shall not recoil from ray duty. Adieu, let us invoke the Virgin, 
the saints, your holy patroness, and above all, the Three Persons 
of the all-powerful and all-merciful Trinity." 

The musketeer at once arranged with the young lady 
that precisely at midnight she should descend from her 
chamber, and he furnished her, for that purpose, with a 
silken ladder wrapped in a handkerchief. She was to 
make for a part of the wall over which a white plume 
would be displayed, and having arrived there, she was to 
clap her hands three times, and her liberators would 

These matters having been arranged, prudence required 
the lovers to separate ; but the Vicomte, who at first had 
been more timid than the object of his affection, pro- 
tracted his adieu until Mademoiselle Justine, an artful spy 
over the j^outhful inmates, arrived. At sight of her, the 

The Fawn's Escape. 245 

musketeer took his leave in the style of a valet. This 
'was in vain ; she was not to be deceived, and her prac- 
tised eye detected the man of quality. The provincial 
livery could not conceal true grace and courtly bearing 
beneath its gaudy laces. At once she proceeded to make 
her report to Madame. Alarm spread through the camp, 
and they took immediate me^isures to defeat the plans of 
the young couple. Helene passed the rest of the day 
almost alone. Madame having sought admission, a vio* 
lent headache was alleged as a justification for declining 
an interview. She soon returned, and being admitted by 
Justine, she openly divulged the purposes which she enter- 
tained. Helene gave full vent to her scorn and unqualified 
disdain. This was indiscreet, but the error arose not more 
from her youthful inexperience than from the noble sin- . 
cerity and purity of her mind. Flattery was tried, and 
she was addressed in terms of the highest exaggeration as 
to the brilliant position to which the royal favor would 
necessarily exalt her. This produced a declaration from 
her that love unsanctioned by marriage commenced with 
infamy and terminated in perdition. This language ex- 
cited a perfect tempest of invective, her scruples were 
derided, and to the most galling sneers were added direct 
threats of ruin to all her kindred, and also to the family 
of her lover. 

Tears were her reply, but her determination was un- 
changed. She expressed a wish to retire early. In this 
she was indulged ; and as midnight sounded she attached 
the silken cord to the window, and abandoning herself to 
Providence, she rapidly descended. Having reached the 
ground in safety, she knelt and offered her thanks to 
Heaven for this successful commencement. % Then, ap- 
]>roaching the exterior wall, she perceived the white plume 
r.iised above it upon a pole. She clapped her hands, and 
immediately heard all the indications of a violent contest, 
Murmurs, imprecations, the clash of weapons, and several 
pistol shots were almost simultaneous. The uproar in- 
creased ; a struggle, hand to hand, seemed to terminate 
in the departure of the combatants, aud 2\\)cvo\3l^ ^<^ 
signal contiaaed displayed, profound silciuce 'dTi?k\3L'&^» 

2i6 Twenty Tears* Recollections. 

The poor girl was overwhelmed with terror, her conjec- 
tures were tortures thoroughly agonizing ; but just as the 
external tumult ceased, Madame issued from the mansion, 
attended by six male servants bearing torches. 

" Indeed, Mademoiselle," said this debased woman^ ''you' 
c&nnot expect us to indulge your wishes for midnight 
promenades in an inclement season. The air is sharp, 
and your health is delicate. Please to re-enter the man- 
sion. The physician will hold us responsible for the 
results of such indiscretion ; and our tenderness for you 
compels us to guard against your caprices. Until jou 
become more reasonable, you must occupy an apartment 
fi^om which you shall not find it so easy to issue." 

Mademoiselle de Pal did not condescend to reply 

to this cool impertinence, but she understood that in such 
a contest her adversaries were unscrupulous as to the 
means they employed. Alone, almost lifeless with terror, 
and abandoned by her father, she apprehended the most 
sinister designs, and her undisguised disgust excited an 
implacable hostility amongst those to whom the superiority 
of virtue was odious. " In fact," murmured the mistress 
of the mansion, ''we are far more foolish than she is 
herself, to labour for her exaltation ; the insulting creature 
will only detest us the more for our exertions.'* 

They placed her on the ground floor, and assigned her 
some apartments furnished in the most luxurious manner ; 
but the windows were carefully fitted with iron bars. 
When Justine had a second time undressed her mistress, 
Madame betook herself to rest. 

Mademoiselle de Pal spent the night in tears, for 

she understood too well what had occurred. Men pre- 
viously posted had been waiting for her lover. Perhaps 
he had paid, even with his life, for his generous interven- 
tion. She implored God to protect the young musketeer, 
arid to avert the crushing resentment of the King. 

In the morning she requested an audience of Madame^ 
which was immediately granted, and she earnestly implored 
of her not to report what had passed to his Majesty. " I 
know hot what I might do on another occasion," was the 

The Fawn's Escape. 247 

reply, " but in the present case I have only to ejtpress my 
regret that the King is already fully informed * upon the 

" It will be upon me then," promptly observed Helene, 
^^that his wrath must fall, since my generous defender is 

" Dead ! the Vicomte de Benavent-Rhodes ! You are 
pleased to think so," remarked this depraved woman, in a 
bantering tone. " Certainly it is not owing to him and 
his associates that some of the King's servants did not 
perish. Happily, there has been more noise than actual 
injury ; but this gentleman and four other musketeers are 
in the custody of the grand -pre vot, and they must answer 
to justice for an armed attack, at midnight, on a royat 
residence. The laws of France attach capital punishment 
to such an outrage." 

Mademoiselle de Pal • uttered a piercing shriek, and 

fell into violent convulsions, which excited great alarm in 
the mind of Madame, lest the death, or even the severe 
indispoeition, of the young beauty, should be imputed to 
her indiscretion. She sought to as&Uage her sufferings, 
and when restoratives had produced relief, strongly advised 
her to apply to his Majesty, who was of a merciful dis- 
position, and would not refuse pardon to the musketeers 
At her intercession. 

The dread of the price which would be demanded for 
this favor contributed to diminish the pleasure which the 
hope of clemency excited. Nevertheless she resolved to 
meet the peril, trusting to overcome it, and to conquer 
culpable intentions by purity of heart and the innate 
power of virtue. When she ascertained that Louis XV. 
had arrived, she proceeded to the saloon. The conversa- 
tion was gay, brilliant, and varied. Mademoiselle dis- 
played the intrepidity which is so frequently the attendant 
of innocence, and although her face was suffused with 
blushes, her voice was distinct and unfaltering, as she 
gracefully and respectfully besought the King to pardon 
the five prisoners. Louis reverted to his feelings towards 
herself, and observed that it lay in her power to indued 

248 Twenty Years* Recollections, 

bim to interfere in a matter which involyed a direct 
offence against his personal safety and his rights. He 
indulged in the chivalrous leyity which has so often 
characterised the Bourbons, remarking that he was her 
slave, but that even a slave should not be exasperated. 
Finally, he gave her distinctly to understand that the fate 
of the pnsoners depended on her compliance. 

She demanded four days* interval, which the King 
\- acceded to, adding that she could not follow a better 
\. example than that of Jephtha's daughter. 

Two days had elapsed, the King was going to lifass, 
when a priest placed himself in front of the cortege. 

** Monsieur P Abb^,'* said the Due de Richelieu, •* stand 
aside, you impede his Majesty's passage." 

" Sire,'* exclaimed the priest, " Sire !** and he raised hit 
voice, notwithstanding the repeated admonitions of the 
Due de Richelieu that silence should be observed, and that 
the King was not to be accosted then or there. 

*< Sire, in the name of God, and appealing to the pious 
traditions of your race, I implore an audience. Reflect 
that a moment's delay may endanger your hopes of Para- 

The firmness and dignified demeanor of the ecclesiastie 
produced an extraordinary effect upon his Majesty. He 
stopped, reflected an instant, and then replied — 

*^ Be it so, Monsieur ; after Mass you may come to my 
closet, I shall hear you there." 

This strange incident perplexed the court. The Comte 

and the Baron de Pal were well known amongst the 

coiu*tier8 ; but their brother, pious and unpresuming, passed 
unnoticed in a place where no one appeared important un- 
less by the favor they received, or by the influence they 
possessed. Impelled by curiosity, a crowd surrounded the 
abbd, and were lost in various conjectures. Mass being 
over, the door of the royal closet opened, and the captain . 
of the guard advanced and enquired for the abbe to whom 
the King had promised an audience. The abb^ presented 
himself and was admitted. He addressed the King in 
terms of profound respect, but i^rotested against the 

Tite Fawn's Escape. 249 

letention of his niece, and also pleaded the cause of the 
i^bung musketeer and his companions. In speaking of 
;be young lady and her lover, his language was pathetic 
md persuasive ; but he did not hesitate to remind the mon- 
irch of the enormity of deliberate, premeditated sin, and 
)f the awful consequences before that tribunal of eternal 
ustice where monarchs would be judged without reference 
,o earthly power, save as to how far they had abused it. 
tie was urging his arguments, when the official entered and 
^resented a letter .which the King immediately perused, 
ind raised his eyes and hands in great perturbation. 
'* Ah ! Monsieur I'Abbe," he exclaimed, " do not proceed 
iny further. The danger is imminent. Go, invested with 
plenary authority, at once to the Parc-aux-Cerfs.'* 

** Me, sire !'' 

'*Yes, you; 1 want not your indignant looks. Lose 
not a moment, run, demand Mademoiselle de Pal ." 

** My niece !" 

*' The same ; prevent the accomplishment of her fatal 
resolution. Let her know that I renounce — but no, she 
IS destroyed ; it is all over. Take and read that. My 
God, how obstinate and self-willed these little girls are V* 

The abbd, astonished at this event, hastily perused the 

** Sire,** wrote the young lady, ** I am apprised that it is by my 
dishononr the life of the Vicomte de Benavent can be saved. 
I prefer saving his life by the sacriHce of my own. If you do 
not wish to be answerable for my fate before an Almighty judge, 
do not punish a lover whom you have rendered sufficiently miser- 
able already by my untimely deuth. I shall have ceased to live 
when this letter meets your eyes." 

*' But go, Monsieur,'* the King exclaimed again, " These 
priests are effective only in the pulpit ; they can advise 
well, but cannot act with energy." 

The horror of that note imparted speed to the abb^ ; he 
ran to the Parc-aux-Cerfs, preceded by the Marquis de 
Pontecoulant, who was sent specially by the King. The 
xuansion was in an indescribable state^ il^ mxc^aX^'^ ^c^^&^ 

250 Twenty Yeari Recollections. 

with consternation at the desperate course adopted by the 
hapless Helene. Several physicians were present, and 
various antidotes had been tried, but without any satis- 
factory results. At sight of the abbe, the bedside was 
left free for his approach. 

" Oh ! my niece," said the priest, in a voice almost 
choked with grief, " how could you presume to dispose of 
your life ?" 

** I preferred death to infamy." 

*' My niece, your honor is respected, and the King con- 
cedes your requests. The Yicomte de Benavent and his 
comrades are at liberty." 

*' Then I go to my grave consoled and contented." 

^' Dearest Helene ! live to make a husband happy ; live 
to impart joy to your family," 

" It is too late." 

The abb^ cast imploring looks on the medical men, 
whose countenances mutely indicated their conviction of 
the hopelessness of the case. The sad sacrifice appeared 
nearly coosummated. How she had obtained the poison 
none could tell. Dissolution seemed imminent, when a 
man of lofty stature, whose features, though extremely 
fiwarthy, expressed great intelligence, entered the room. 
In one hand he bore a small glass, and in the other a 
phial, containing a liquid of the deepest green color, and 
perfectly clear. " I come by the King's command," ho 
exclaimed ; and passing, through the yielding crowd, to 
the bedside, he half filled the glass with water, into which 
he dropped a portion of the green elixir. Directing Jus- 
tine to raise the drooping head of the apparently expiring 
girl, he succeeded in getting her to swallow the medicine. 
Immediately a fierce spasm convulsed her frame ; she 
raised herself with surprising energy, but instantly fell 
back on the pillow. 

'^She is dead!" exclaimed many of those present. 

'^ She is saved," replied the tall, swarthy man, in a tone 

of perfect confidence. He was the celebrated Comte da 

Bamt-Germam^ whose influeivce with Louis XV, appeared 

/Mysterious to the courtiers, buX. x^a^^X^ *ax^i%^ \xqisv \3cvi 

The Count de Coucy, 251 

jxtensive information and research. In theory and practice 
lis scientific attainments were of a very high order, and 
ippeared still more surprising when contrasted with the 
giiorance and imbecility of the aristocracy of that period. 

Mademoiselle de Pal recovered so speedily as to be 

capable of removing, under her uncle's care, in about a 
iveek. On leaving the Parc-aux-Cerfs, The Escaped Fawn 
received, by order of the King, a splendid note-case, in 
kvhicli there was a draft on the Controller-General for five 
bundred thousand francs (£20,000.) On the previous 
evening, the King said to the Vicomte de Benavent : — 

*' Monsieur, on this occasion I am endowing virtue." 
Then he added, with a laugh, "One swallow does not 
make a summer.''* 

On the day that Mademoiselle left the Parc-aux-Cerfs, 
her worthless father was banished from court, and enjoined 
to live on his estate at Vivarais. The Chevalier d'Arc had 
the effrontery to present himself at court as if nothing to 
his discredit had occurred ! The King remarked to him, 
that in affairs of gallantry, the consent of the young lady 
was more necessary than that of her father ; and suggested 
that he should in future avoid appearing in Paris or Ver- 
sailles, and ^Ts. his residence at Tulle. He accordingly 
retired to that place, where he died in 1779, 



It is probable that these pages will be perused by some 
who recollect a recent attempt to substitute a child pro- 
cured in an English workhouse for the veritable heir to 
an Irish earldom. It is extremely improbable, that, in 
any part of the world, they may be read by any person 
unacquainted with the main circumstances of the 
lengthened investigations, which terminated in the oon* 

* The original phrase is '* Une fois n'esl p&& co\x\.w.xci&^^ 

252 Twenty Years* Recollections. 

viction of a spurious aspirant to an English baronetcy. I 
shall now offer ray second selection from the French 
memoirs. It relates to a claim to a title of nobility, and^ 
looking to the source from which the statements have 
b*»en derived, I think they may fairly be designated a 
true account of a falsehood. 

The Marquis de Coucy sent his son to be nursed at 
Gonesse, where he was left during three years, as was 
usual at that period (the reign of Louis XI V.) The 
young Count was then b^^ought back to his paternal 
home, and became the idolized darling of his parents, 
who had no other child. When the proper time arrived 
to commence his education, the first masters were engaged. 
His progress was most rapid, and at sixteen, having com- 
pleted his preliminary studies, he was entered at the 
Military Academy. 

One day, whilst he was amusing himself along with 
some of the Rohans, the Tremouilles, a Duguesclin or 
two, and several of the young Rochefoucaults, a decrepit 
female, hideously ugly, excessively dirty, although not 
badly clad, proposed to this party of high-born lads to 
tell their fortunes. Some haughtily rejected the old im- 
postor, others eagerly embraced her offer, and amongst 
them the young Coucy. She took the hands of four or 
five in succession, told them her idle stories, and pocketed 
their money. 

All, through a motive of amusement, even those who 
were not desirous of making a personal experience of her 
imaginative power, surrounded the fortune-teller. When 
it came to the turn of the young Count de Coucy to ex- 
tend his palm, he offered it. The old hag examined his 
hand for a much longer time than she had devoted to the 
inspection of the preceding ones, and suddenly rejecting 
it with every indication of disdain, she exclaimed — 
" Back, fellow ! Begone, clown ! I am here to speak 
only to gentle-folk, and not to tell the future destiny of a 
peasant's son." 

At these words there was a universal laugh: some ridi- 
culing the old woman on hei di\\m\i^"^o\s^T:, others vent- 

The Count de Coucy. 253 

ng a good-humoured raillery upon their companion. He 
jnew not whether to be jocular or angry. They informed 
be old woman of the name and title of the illustrious 
outh whom she had designated the son of a peasant, but 
he continued to swear by all the saints that the young 
Joucy was nothing else. The uproar occasioned by this 
enunciation continued to such a pitch, that the captain of 
avalry, the commandant of the academy, interfered, and 
ailing a groom, directed him to turn out that woman. 

** That a woman ! " exclaimed .the groom ; *' I would 
rager that it is a man." 

Another groom declared that he had seen an individual, 
a the habit of a peasant, enter a neighbouring tavern, 
rom whence, in about a quarter of an hour, he had 
ssued disguised as a female ; and he averred that the 
ortune-teller whom they had just expelled was the same 
»erson. The young Count de Coucy heard these state- 
nents with indifference ; but as they referred to a crea- 
ure who had seemed to take pleasure in insulting him, 
hey did not entirely lapse from his recollection. 

Six months passed. One morning the Marquis dis 
IJoucy, being in his room, was discussing with the Mar- 
ihioness a project of marriage for the young Count ; 
hey were anxious to marry him to a princess of the house 
►f Lorraine. In the midst of their deliberations, a valet- 
le-chambre appeared. He was the brother of the young 
fount's foster-lather, and the servant to whom the Mar- 
quis manifested the greatest liking and confidence. He 
ipologised for disturbing their conversation, and stated 
hat a young man, of a most elegant demeanor and pre- 
)ossessing manner, and whose appearance seemed almost 
amiliar to him, requested to be admitted. 

" Let him come in," said the Marquis. The stranger is 
ntroduced. He is youthful, and appears not to have 
massed his seventeenth year ; his figure slight and symme- 
;rical ; his aspect expressive and bland ; his carriage is 
;ood, he has a sweet smile, and his salute is agreeable. 
Still his deportment does not suggest that noble blood is 
:oursing through his veins. He has not \\x^ ^-nsX^^raxsj^. 

254 Twenty Years* Recollections. 

air which a courtly life imparts, or the polished manner 
derived from elevated society. 

The young man appears under the influence of some 
strong emotions ; he produces a letter, and presents it to 
the Marquis. It is received, and the youthfiil stranger 
sinks upon his knees, and covers his face with his haodi, 
as if about to implore pardon for some great transgressioD. 
Here is the letter : — 

'* MoNSEioNBUR, — Sixteen years have this day elapsed mtitf 
yielding to the pernicious suggestions of my wife, I committed a 
horrible crime, of which I now accuse myself, and for whichl 
must endeavor to make all possible reparation, by a full acknow- 
ledgment of my offence. This luckless day saw your legitimttB 
heir taken from his cradle, and my poor son substituted for the 
noble child. The imposture still continues, and it is the son of 
Maurice Lesourd and Madeleine Ledaille that, in your princdj 
mansion, occupies the position due to your legitimate off8priii& 
whose youth has been condemned to the weary labours of amstie 
life. Whilst my wife lived, I reluctantly concealed this scands- 
lous transaction, but her death, this very day, terminates my 
guilty silence ; and as I do not involve her in the punishmeat 
due to my offence, I feel the less repugnance in submitting to tl^ 
justice of the violated laws. I send you, monsei^nenr, your son; 
he will deliver this letter, and it is for you to place him in his 
rightful position. I shall receive, in return, the unfortunate ores- 
tare from whom a brilliant career of life is thus withdrawn. Ca^ 
mv utmost tenderness ever repay him for the loss incident to tbis 
disclosure ? 

'' 1 am ready to maintain, before any tribunal, the integrity of 
this statement ; and I cherish the hope, that I may still enjoy 
some portion of your distinguished protection. I have the honor 
to be, Monseigneur, your most humble, most respectful servant,— 

'^Mauricb Leboubd.** 

The Marquis could not believe his eyes. The Mar- 
chioness fell lifeless at the reading of this startling com- 
munication ; but presently, yielding to a natural impulse, 
raising the young man from his humble posture, they 
pressed him to their hearts, and mingled their tears whilst 
recognising his title to their affections. 

One thing surprised the Marquis, the style of the letter. 
The young man declared that it was written by the 
brother-in-law of Lesourd, the chief clerk of a Parisian 

The Count de Coney, 255 

no.tary. " He it was," added the youth, " that stimulated 
Lesourd to this act of justice ; he is an excellent man, 
worthy of the patronage of Monseigneur " 

** Say your father's patronage," replied the Marquis ; 
**but his noble conduct shall not lack acknowledgment 
and recompense ; from this day he shall be my confiden- 
tial agent. My present agent wishes to retire, being aged 
and infirm." 

Meanwhile, the Marchioness, recovering from her ex- 
citement, recollecting the virtues and high endowments of 
him whom she was no longer to term her son, began to 
consider that to deprive him of the rights with which he 
had been so long vested, would require something more 
than the mere will, or even the conclusive determination, 
of the Marquis. Her husband found himself meshed in 
the most embarrassing manner; and the new aspirant, 
who is already invested with the title of Count de Coucy, 
perceives that he has to encounter an obstacle of which 
he had not calculated the strength and magnitude, namely, 
the adverse possession by his rival for upwards of fourteen 
years of the position in which he now sought to super- 
sede him ! How was he to deprive him of title, rank, 
fortune I How was he to banish him from a family of 
which he had so long been a cherished member ? There 
was nothing in his deportment denoting the inferiority of 
his birth. He bore no resemblance, indeed, to either the 
Marquis or Marchioness de Coucy, but his likeness to the 
father of the latter had frequently been remarked. 

He now enters the apartment. His air is noble, and 
with respectful affection he embraces the parents of his 
love. Their fondness for him of whom they had been so 
proud, and by whom their anxieties and hopes had been 
engrossed, is irrepressible. They are plunged into heart- 
breaking perplexity. They cannot allow the awful storm 
suddenly to burst upon him. Neither the Marquis nor 
his lady could summon courage for an explanation, which, 
nevertheless, it was impossible long to defer. The new 
claimant is withdrawn for the time, a large sum is given 
for his use, and both of the parents, to wkom he, Ia:^ 

256 Twenty Yeari Recollections. 

so lately presented himself as their offspring, assure him 
that a speedy and rigid investigation shall be instituted. 

Persons of the highest discretion and of the greatest 
sagacity are put in requisition. Experienced magistrates, 
profound lawyers, are consulted. They mostly declare 
that the confession of the foster-father is insufficient ; but 
some incline to a different opinion. The matter could not 
be concealed ; in a few days it becomes publicly known. 
The partisans of the new claimant make loud comments 
on the insulting and disdainful manner, with which a 
fortune-teller at the academy had repelled the Count, 
telling him that he was a plebeian. The gentlemen who 
were present attested this fact, to which immense import- 
ance was attached. 

The unfortunate Count trembled with rage at these 
attacks. He tenderly loved his parents, and was deeply 
shocked at the bare possibility of losing their affections. 
M. de la Rochefoucault, his most intimate friend, an- 
nounced to him the damaging effect of the scene with the 
gi^sy. For a long time the Count had forgotten this 
event ; but when it was mentioned by his friend, all the 
circumstances recurred to his mind, and amongst them 
the expressions of the two grooms. They are sent for. 
One repeats that he believed the person referred to was a 
man disguised as a female ; the other declared that he 
had seen a peasant enter the tavern known as de la Bonne- 
Foly rue du Petit-Lion-Saint- Sauveur, and that the same 
person soon after issued forth in female attire. 

The Count and his advisers betook themselves to this 
tavern. They did not find it easy to enlighten the pro- 
prietor, or bring him to appreciate the importance of their 
inquiries ; but when he had sufficiently collected his ideas, 
he declared that a peasant of Gonesse, with whom he was 
personally acquainted, one Lesourd, had asked to be ac- 
commodated with a room in which he could disguise him- 
self, and, he added, that Lesourd stated his motive for the 
trick to be, that he was employed by the parents of a 
young man to watch his conduct. ».t. the. academy, and that 
the disguise thus adopted affoxde^ \\vai \)tift \i^?>\\si<^"a.xi& sjJL 
^Muiking his observations. 

The Count de Coucy. 257 

This was an important discovery. Lesourd encoun- 
tered it by declaring that the better to punish himself for 
his substitution of the false heir, and to prepare a triumph 
for the cause of truth, he had made this preliminary de- 
nunciation of his son. This reason appeared unsatis- 
factory ; such conduct was not straightforward or candid. 
Truth abhors disguises. Still the mystery was undis«- 
covered, and all remained involved in doubt The most 
conflicting opinions continued to be entertained, and the 
best society in Paris sought no other topic for conversation 
than the merits of the respective claimants to the honors 
of the illustrious house of Coucy. 

We have to recollect that, on the recommendation of 
the new candidate, the brother-in-law of Lesourd had 
been appointed agent to the Marquis de Coucy. He had 
quitted the notarial office in which he had been previously 
employed, and for several weeks had discharged the duties 
)f his new and important function. He had laboured 
vith great zeal to establish the claims of the recent 
corner, and omitted no opportunity of furthering his cause* 
This man. Remain Ladaille, possessed a spaniel, an ex- 
remely sagacious and gentle animal. The Marchioness 
>ecame fond of the dog, and allowed it into the apart- 
nents of the mansion, where it became a complete pet. 
3ae morning Remain was engaged with the Marquis on 
ome business of importance. A manuscript was wanting. 
%.fter a slight delay the agent found it, and hiying it before 
he Marquis, he casually observed, "If I had not found 
he paper, Fidele would have relieved us of the difficulty ; 
le is so intelligent a dog, he finds anything that is lost.'* 
[Jpon this he paces round the chamber, conceals his port- 
rolio beneath the cushions of a sofa, and then returning 
to his seat, calls the dog, pretends to lament the loss of 
something valuable, and makes a gesture to Fidele to 
search for the missing article. The animal at once be- 
takes himself to the task, as if he fully comprehended a 
glance of his master ; he smells about the apartment, and 
presently drags the portfolio from its place of concealment. 
The Marquis was highly amused; he called the do^^ 

258 Twenty Tears^ ReroUeciions, 

and disengaging the portfolio from his teeth, a letter drops 
from it. The superscription is in his own name. He opensi 
it, and as he reads an indescribable agitation perrades his 
frame ; his hand trembles, the blood forsakes Im cheeks, 
and his strength scarcely suffices to ring the belL A 
servant appears, and receives an order. In a few moments 
an exempt of the Police enters, and respectfully requires 
to know for what purpose he has been summoned. 

" To arrest this villain," cries the Marquis, pointing to 
his agent ; ** and to affix your signature to the margin of 
this letter, which I have just received from his portfolio, 
and which I must request you to peruse." 

The Marchioness having been apprised of some extra- 
ordinary discovery having been made, hastens to her 
husband. "Ah, beloved wife," he says to her, "God 
has had pity on our misery ; the imposture is unveiled. 
Listen, it is Heaven itself that succours ns." And he 
reads — 


''I am on my death-bed, and at this awful moment, truth is 
a duty which I owe to you. You have been my benciactor ; I hare 
been reared in your hoosehold ; yon were bountiful to me on my 
iDarriage, and by you I was chosen to nurse your only child. 
7hree years have passed since my husband^ induced by some per- 
i^icious temptation, besought me to pass our son Pierrot as yours, 
but I have always refused to commit this crime. Nevertheless, I 
fear that after my death this guilty design will be persevered in* 
I therefore apprise you of the sure means of its detection. In his 
childhood Pierrot fell into the fire, and the accident has left visible, 
marks on his legs and left arm. These scars will serve to show 
which is your son and which the impostor, in. case they vhoiild 
attempt to deceive you on the subject. Tour son has not the 
slightest mark of' a burn on any pan of his frame. All our neif^h- 
bonrg are aware* of the accident having occurred to my child. I 
confide this letter to Komain, my brother, and have enjoined him 
to deliver it to you. On receiving it, send for mv huifband, read 
it to him, and he will renounce his evil project. 6ut for the love 
of God, and in the requital of the service I now render, pardon my 
nnfortunate husband, and do not abandon my poor Pierrot, my 
owu wretched son. 

**I have the honor to be, &c., &c. 

^'Madbleimb Ladaille femme LEsonjU).** 

Ooneaae, Maj 22nd, 1712. 

Dumas. 259 

Beyond this letter there was nbthing required to prove 
the fraud of Lesourd and his brother-in-law. The latter 
fell on lu9 knees before the Marquis, beseeching mercy, 
^nd throwing on his brother-in-law all the odium of the 
infamous design in which, he said, the threats of Lesourd 
had compelled him to participate. Lesourd, when brought 
forward, wished to exculpate himself by attributing to 
Bomain the entire plan and subsequent furtherance ot the 
iniuuitous affair. Thus, these t^o scoundrels aggravated 
still more their detestable guilt. They finished by de- 
claring that the youthful Pierrot wa& their willing acconpc- 

The police, by some inquiries, succeeded in deqrQO^n- 
strating that the two brothers-in law were equally wUling 
to promote their nefarious scheme. Justice had some vin- 
dication. Lesourd and Homain were sent to the galleys, 
but the Marchioness interceded for Pierrot. Some money 
"Was given to him, and he went to America, There, this 
dete^ble fellow continued to call himself the Count de 

The spaniel Fidele became the cherished pet of the true 
count ; Romain never could account how the letter of his 
sister, which he treasured carefully as the mead^ of domi- 
neering over his nephew in case his attempt on the title of 
de Coucy should prove successful, had been taken from a 
easket in which he had placed it, as a most important 
possession; how it was transferred to the portfolio he 
could never conjecture. But the police received, in the 
course of their investigations, some statements from which 
they were led to believe that Romain was occasionally a 


Dumas, in the construction of the plots of some of his 
novels, seems to have availed himself of facts derived from 
the Police Memoirs, over which, however, he spreads a 
very ample drapery of fiction. In "The Three MusiA- 
teers" he asfaibed to a Gascon gent\em«tTt^ ^ kxXa.^-wv^ ^ 

260 Twenty Tears' RecolUctiona. 

clearness of perception, a promptitude of action, and a 
personal intrepidity which were really exhibited by one 
who was bom much nearer to the Shannon than to the 
Garonne, and who was a confidential attendnt in the 
household of the Duke of Buckingham, and is mentioned 
by Bois-Robert, one of Richelieu's spies, in the following 
terms : — 

*< I shall first state to his Eminence, that chance haymg 
enabled me again to meet an Irishman whom I had 
known in Paris, when he was pursuing his studies ; I then 
rendered him some service, and he, from that moment, 
manifested to me the most ardent gratitude. On leaving 
Paris, he proceeded to England, where, very luckily, he 
became the valet-de-chambre of his grace the Duke of 
Buckingham. Although the emoluments of that situation 
must be considerable, Patrick O'Reilly (which is the name 
of this Irishman) is always without a halfpenny. In this 
respect he imitates his noble master. I have received him 
kindly whenever he came to see me ; and such is my 
zeal in the service of Monseigneur, that I have submitted 
to associate with this valet, hoping to obtain some useful 
information respecting his master. It was also for this 
purpose that I advanced him some money.'' 

Dumas does not entirely ignore the name of Patrick 

O'Reilly, but he gives it to a jeweller, whom he mentions 

as the wealthiest and most skilful of all then following 

that trade in London. In his novel of the Count of 

Monte Cristo, he introduces the hero as the chief officer of 

a fine merchant ship. It would have been more true, 

though perhaps rather vulgar, to have presented to his 

readers, a shoemaker, of the description called chamber 

masters, whose name was Fran9ois Picaud, and who, 

through motives of jealousy or envy, was represented to 

Savary, due de Rovigo, as an agent or spy for the English 

and the rojralists of La Vendee. He was imprisoned, 

his intended marriage having been prevented by his arrest, 

and continued, incarcerated at Fenestrelle from 1807 to 

18J4. In tHe prison he was appropriated as a personal 

Mtendant to a Niiiaiies^ ecdasiasxwi^ ^1 Vaj^ twak^ who 

A Threatened Suicide. 261 

died in Januaiy, 1814, having confided to Picaud full 
information as to his immense property, and the places 
where the documents necessary to it were to be found. 
He also gfl^e him a brief testamentary grant of all he 
possessed ot' was entitled to. There was a very great value 
accniing to the legatee in diamonds and hidden coin, but 
that treasure was in the vicinity of Milan, and the state- 
ments respecting the Chateau d'lf, and the island of 
Monte Cristo, were complete fictions. 

As to the last novel to which I have adverted, I am 
tempted into finding very great fault with one of its inci- 
dents, which appears most unnatural, and therefore most 
improbable. I refer to the scene between the ruined mer- 
chant and his son, in which a father acknowledges his 
intention to commit suicide, and ultimately persuades his 
son to acquiesce in such a crime ; nay, even to use to his 
parent, with the pistols lying before him prepared for the 
catastrophe, the expression, " Die in peace, my father, I 
will live." This is, I repeat, unnatural and improbable. 
The English are said to be a suicidal people, amongst 
whom a November day produces throat-cutting, pistoling, 
and poisoning ; but in England was there ever an instance 
of suicide being the subject of consultation between parent 
and child ? Oh I never ; nor do we believe that such could 
appear to our continental neighbours more consistent with 
the state and feelings of society amongst theiii than it is 
amongst ourselves, 


I may mention, in reference to suicidal attempts, that I 
witnessed what I at first considered a dreadful attempt on 
the part of a Frenchman to terminate his existence before 
some hundreds of spectators, and in the immediate pre- 
sence of a handsome young woman whose frigid indifference, 
to his ardent passion for her he loudly declared had ren- 
dered his life insupportable. It was during my visit to 
Paris in 1853, and occurred on a Sunday, in the grounds 
adjoining the palace of St. Cloud, where there were nume- 

262 Twenty Years' BecoUections. 

TDUS tables occupied fully by parties enjoying tlie yiands 
and wine, beer, or coffee, procured from two restauxantD, 
ivhich were also well supplied with the choicest confec- 
tions. The demented lover, who was very w«iU-lookiog, 
and seemed to be about five and twenty ymA of age, 
declared, unless Mademoiselle would agree to inairy Mm 
in the ensuing week, he was determined to die there, and 
shed his blood at her feet. She appeared worse than 
indifferent to his entreaties and to the fatal intentions 
which be expressed, for she laughed most heartlessly at 
his expressions of hopeless despair. Leaving the table, 
he threw an overcoat across his arm, and hurried to one 
of the restaurants, from which he very quickly returned, 
and made a final demand that Mademoiselle should decide 
his fate. She continued inexorable, and I felt great sur- 
prise that none of those who heard him interfered either 
by expostulation or actual restraint. With frantic gesti* 
oulations he drew a pocket-pistol from under the folds of 
his overpoat^ and thrust it into his mouth. It produced, 
however, no explosion. The pistol gave way between his 
closing teeth, and the barrel was soon lodged in his 
stomach. The apparently deadly weapon was made of 
chocolate, of which the obdurate damsel, still laughing, 
insisted on getting a portion. 




I RETURNED to Dublin in 1853, on the 10th of May, and 
had the pleasure of witnessing the opening of the Great 
Industrial Exhibition in Merrion Square on the 12th. It 
was a great success, and caused a very considerable influx 
of visitors to Dublin, not merely from other parts of tha 

DargaiCa Exiiibition. 263 

United Kingdom, but also from the continent of Europe, 
and even more distant regions. It is unnecessary to dilate 
on the beneficial tendency of such displays to awaken 
tastes aad excite emulation in reference to artistic produc- 
tions of Dieauty or utility, for it is almost universally 
acknowledged; but I am convinced that they produce 
very salutary effects by bringing each class of society into 
the view and under the observation of the others, approxi- 
mating without confounding them, requiring no relinquish'* 
ment of rank cr undue familiarity. The building in which 
the exhibition was held was erected at the personal ex- 
pense of William Dargan, and cost £26,000. A statue, on 
the pedestal of which ^' Dargan^' is inscribed, now stands 
upon the scene of his patriotic liberality. No other in- 
scription is requisite to have his generosity acknowledged 
and his memory revered by his countrymen. Previous to 
the opening in 1853, it was suggested in the public press 
and at the sittings of the committee, that as the inaugu- 
ration of the English exhibition in 1851 had been accom- 
panied by a prayer for the occasion, offered by a prelate of 
the highest lank, a similar course should be observed in 
Dublin. However, the opening here was not attended by 
any ecclesiastical demonstration, and some few of the 
spectators considered the omission culpable. At the 
close of the ceremony, three or four young men passed 
out at the same time that my brother magistrate, James 
Magee, and I were leaving. There was no indication as 
to the religious denomination to which they belonged, but 
we were greatly amused at the zealous and fervent piety 
of one who designated the omission of prayer, on such an 

occasion, as *' a d d shame." 

The Dublin Exhibition of 1853 continued open until 
the end of October, and during that time theire was only 
one charge brought for magisterial investigation from 
vnthin its limits, and it was preferred before me. There 
was a portion of the building termed the ** Medieval 
Court," and a man was accused of stealing, in that place, 
a coat belonging to a person employed on the premises. 
He confessed his guilt, and I awarded him two months' 

264 Twenty Tears* Recollections. 

imprisonment with hard labor for the unlawful possession 
of the article. This solitary offence would, perhaps, have 
lapsed from my memory but for the total ignorance of the 
term "medievaP' evinced by the parties couoemed, for 
they all spoke of the transaction as having oocurred in 
the " middle evil court** 

It may appear almost incredible to some of my readers 
that, during the erection of the Exhibition building, and 
for upwards of five months in which it was resorted to 
by thousands, and T may add the comparatively short time 
subsequently occupied in taking down the structure and 
removing the materials, there was no other infraction of 
the law brought under magisterial cognizance than the 

?etty larceny case which I have mentioned. I hope that 
shall not be considered too discursive if I introduce here 
an extraordinary and very gratifying statement of an an- 
terior date. The Great Southern and Western Railway 
of Ireland was opened to Carlow in 1846. The splendid 
terminus at the King's Bridge and several miles of the 
line are in the Dublin Metropolitan Police district. The 
works on that portion included very extensive buildings 
and deep excavations, and I have been credibly informed 
that they cost upwards of fihy thousand pounds. A vast 
number of persons were employed, comprising the various 
artisans, laborers, (commonly called navvies,) and drivers. 
I was in office during the entire time of their operations, 
and there was not even one complaint or charge preferred 
as arising amongst any class or between individuals. 
Mr. Dargan, the contractor, at a festive meeting jocularly 
congratulated me "on having a sinecure, as far as regarded 
the people at the King's Bridge, where there were no pro- 
secutions required, except the prosecutions of the works.** 
I regret that at the present time such very gratifying 
qualities could not be expected to a similar extent in 
similar undertakings. Intemperance has become too pre- 
valent, especially amongst the operative portion of the 
community, to admit of large numbers being brought 
together daily, without occasional, or perhaps frequent 

A Bell and Knocker, 265 


There had been in 1852 a contested election' for the 
city of Dublin, and the defeated party, as is usual on such 
occasions, attributed their failure to the use, on the part 
of their adversaries, of every unfair stratagem and corrupt 
inducement. At the commencement of the Session of 
Parliament in 1853, it was rumoured that a petition would 
be lodged to invalidate the return, especially on the grounds 
of extensive bribery amongst the freemen. It was alleged 
that a certain alderman was the confidential treasurer of 
the funds appropriated for the venal voters, and that a 
person named Bell had been employed to procure the 
men and dispense the money. The alderman was one of 
jny most intimate friends, and I frequently enjoyed his 
hospitality. I was also acquainted with several of the 
other party who were loud in their denunciations of the 
corruption of which Bell was alleged to have been the 
instrument. When I heard them speaking of the sums 
distributed amongst the freemen, I contented myself by 
affecting to lament the injustice to which I was indivi- 
dually subjected, that I was a freeman of my native city, 
and that I might have participated in the distribution to 
which they referred, were it not for an odious statutable 
enactment which prohibited a Dublin Police magistrate 
from exercising the franchise, and realizing its incidental 
advantages, whilst the English Metropolitan Magistrates 
were subjected to no such disqualification. One of my 
friends who happened to be the editor of a newspaper, 
remarked that I seemed disposed to treat the recent bribery 
with levity, and to regard it as mere fun, and I replied 
that he was not far wrong in his conjecture, and that I 
would advise him to adopt a similar course. He asked 
me to commit my ideas to writing and transmit them to 
him. I acceded to his request, and he published my 
communication ; but I feel confident that neither publicly 
nor privately did he divulge the name of its author. No 
parliamentary petition was presented*, atid X\v^ \y^\>Xw>Alv3^ 

266 TuoetUy Year^ ReooUections. 

treatment of the freemen was only noticed publicly in my 
poor production of — 


Mt retrospection of that election 

Accords perfection to the magic '* Bell,** 
Whose notes so soothing were felt each booth in 

Where freemen voted so prompt and welL 
That Bell so cheering, oar hopes uprearing, 

As Green Street nearing we came to poU, 
With notes persuasive, soft and adhesive. 

And touch evasive of law's coutroU 

There are Joy-bells swinging, and sweetly ringing, 

'llieir blithe sounds flinging from Christ Church high 
And Father Yore has erected more 

On the Liffey*s shore to the Four Courts nigh. 
But more sublime than their varied chime 

Of a festal time or a funeral knell, 
Was the Bell so soothing, felt every booth in 

Where freemen voted so prompt and well. 

From the gifted Prout, we derive no doubt, 

Sweet strains about days of infancy, 
When *' The bells of bhandon did sound so g^nd on 

The pleasant waters of the River Lee." 
We may search in vain, we'll ne'er meet again 

With a sweeter strain than Moore's '* Evening Bell f 
But a Bell more soothing was felt each booth in 

Where freemen voted so prompt and well 

The hermit lowly, whose thoughts are solely 

On subjects holy, delights to hear, 
When morn is shining or eve declining, 

Sweet peals combining, his soul to cheer. 
From far or near to his raptured ear 

No sound so dear ever reach 'd his cell 
Like the Bell so soothing, felt every booth in 

Where freemen voted so prompt and welL 

In a few days after the publication of the foregoing 
lines, I dined at his residence near Salthill, with my friend 
the alderman, and in the course of the evening he men- 
tioned that Bell was greatly annoyed by such a produc- 
tion^ and that he considered it libellous. I asked how 

A Bell ojid Knocker^ 267 

3ul<l he show that it applied to him. My worthy host 
iid that it could not apply to aqy other person, and I 
len remarked that it was not malicioua or of an injurious 
md«&cy, and that it had been written merely as an 
ttempt at harmless fun. This elicited the question of 
ovf I kusew in what spirit it had been written, to which 
replied, l^at I had written it myself, intending to be 
>cos<e ; and that if my verses were not considered worthy 
f laurel, they certainly did not deserve the application of 
irch. To this expression I received a contradiction un« 
aimous but good-humored ; and it was agreed that if the 
ublic whipping of a police magistrate could be effected, it 
rould be an interesting novelty and a general gratification. 
'here w^ere two other aldermen present besides our host, 
nd they repeatedly assured me, even when shaking hands 
t the conclusion of the entertainment, that they would 
rovide some punishment for my transgression. On the 
allowing evening I was at the house of a friend on 
lerchant's Quay, and when I returned home, after mid- 
light, I found that the knocker of my hall-door had 
iisappeared. My servant stated that two gentlemen bad 
ttUedf one of whom expressed a wish to see me, and on 
>eing informed that I was not at home, said that he 
irould write a note in my study and leave it for me. 
Vbilst he was so employed, the other remained in the 
lall. At their departure the servant did not perceive that 
he km>cker had been abstracted ; but at my return I at 
>nce observed the loss, and opening the note, which was 
irritten in a hand manifestly disguised, X read the follow- 
jDg conununication : — 

'* Mr. Porter is so expert in the fabrication of a Bell, that he 
nay confine himself to ringing without knocking.^ 

Although I felt considerable annoyance at such an un- 
warrantable trespass whereby I lost a very handsome and 
expensive brass knocker, 1 did not indulge in resentful 
expressions or state the suspicions which 1 entertained* 
The door remained without a knocker, as iCI m\.€sA^^J^ 

268 Twenty Tears' Recollections, 

acquiesce in the suggestion of only using a bell. The 
door had not been injured or defaced, for the knocker had 
not been wrenched away, but had been unscrewed by the 
person who remained in the hall whilst the other was 
penning the note to me. I was repeatedly quizzed, and 
subjected to mock condolence, but I treated the matter as 
a practical joke, and ascribed the disappearance of my 
knocker to aldermanic influence. In about a fortnight I 
was invited to another dinner at Salthill, and met there 
the same parties who had been at the previous entertain- 
ment. Amongst the various pleasantries of the evening, 
my knocker was not forgotten, and my health was drank, 
accompanied by what I considered a bantering wish for 
the restitution of the brazen appendage to my hall-door. 
On my return home I was surprised to find the door fur- 
nished with a knocker, which I soon recognised as my 
own. It appeared that almost immediately after I had 
left home, a man came to my house, stating that I had 
ordered the article at Bryan's ironmongery warehouse in 
Bride Street, and he proceeded to fix it on. I have 
never since that time meddled with any " Bell," and my 
door has not been interfered with in any disagreeable 

LORD 60U6H. 

About the end of 1853, 1 was for a few weeks engaged 
in magisterial duties at Kingstown, and on one occasion I 
observed the late Viscount Gough entering the police- 
court, and taking a seat in the part to which the public 
wefe indiscriminately admitted. There was some case 
pending, at the hearing of which he wished to be present, 
and I immediately requested his Lordship to honor me 
by occupying a seat beside me, adding that I could not 
consent to a person of his high rank and illustrious char- 
acter remaining in any position inferior to my own. He 
declined my proposal, but consented to take a chair be- 
tween the bench and the right-hand side of the court. 
His chair was rather close to the grate, which was full of 

% only a few minutes pteVYovi'g^^ YvaS^a.^ Tk<a court 

Father Pecherine's Case. 269 

was crowded, and soon became very warm, but his Lord- 
ship's proximity to the grate almost immediately compelled 
him to change his position. Apologizing for th^ inter- 
ruption, he asked me to direct the office constable to 
remove his chair to the left side of the court, and to 
plaoe it near a window. Acceding at once to the request 
of the noble, illustrious, and worthy old warrior, I ordered 
his seat to be moved to the place which he preferred, add- 
ing, that I hoped the gentlemen of the press would report 
the remarkable fact, that Lord Gough retreated from the 
£re of the police, although he never had shrank from any 
other fire, however hot it might have been. A member 
of his family told me, in a few days after, that his Lord- 
ship considered mj observation as most complimentary 
and gratifying. 

FATHER pecherine's CASE. 

In the discharge of my magisterial duties at Kingstown, 
I had to dispose of a charge against a Roman Catholic 
clergyman named Pecherine, for publicly burning a copy 
of the Bible. The accused party was a foreigner, who 
had become a member of the order of Redemptorists, and 
joined a number of that community in holding *' a mis- 
sion " at Kingstown, in November, 1855. 

He preached very frequently to numerous congregations, 
and excited great admiration and even surprise by the 
fluency of his language and correctness of diction. Find- 
ing that many books and tracts had been distributed, in 
Kingstown and its vincinity, containing doctrines or con- 
troversial arguments of which he and his religious asso- 
ciates disapproved, he exhorted his hearers to bring all 
such publications to him, and having received a consider- 
able quantity, be burned them in a large fire lighted 
within the precincts of the church where the mission was 
held, and between the building and the exterior railing. 
It was alleged that amongst the articles thus consumed, 
there was a copy of the Scriptures. A prosecution was 
instituted before me, which was mtl by ^ ^vitiL\aX \N\:dXi ^x^ 

270 Tu>enty Years^ Recollectums. 

perfect copy of the Bible had been burned ; and that if 
even a portion of one had been thus destroyed it was by 
mere mischance, and without his knowledge, intention^ 
or approval. The proceedings before me produced intenrt 
excitement, and great manifestation, especiallj smiongst 
the humbler classes, of the asperities usually incident to 
indications of religious di^rences^ I sent the case for trial 
to the ensuing commission of Oyer et Terminer for the 
County of Dublin, and the re9ult was an acquittal ; bat 
I refer to the occasion as having produced some vwy 
striking instances of the most inconsiderate and rash vio- 
lence, committed without any provocation whaterer on the 
part of those assailed, and in the suppositien that they had 
been concerned in a proceeding with which they were 
totally unconnected. 


Previous to the investigation of the complaints p^ef^ved 
on summons and information, the custody cases were, as 
nsual^ disposed of, and I had nine prisoners brought b(^ 
fore me for having been drunk on the public thorough!^ 
Some had been quiet and submissive, and they were fined 
one shilling each. Others who had been noisy or di^ 
Orderly had fines of half-a-crown or a crown iiiflicted. 
Amongst the former was a newsboy, of about nineteeft 
years of age, who had only one hand. Having paid his 
fine, he was liberated, and passed out into Georges Stnet, 
where a crowd had collected to get the earliest intelligraoe 
as to the progress and result of Farther Pecherine's oas^ 
When the newsboy appeared a girl in the crowd exclaimed, 
'* There's the horrid villain that is just after swearing 
against the priest." Immediately he was seized, violently 
beaten, and dashed through a large plate-glass window in 
the front of a shop. Some police constables were close at 
hand, and saw the sudden attack on the poor lad. Thej 
rushed forward and arrested four men who had been 
prominent in assaulting tY^ iQfi^%\)o^ , vcA cstv^ v^ Uwm 

Assaults and Thefts. 271 

IS fully identified as the person who had first laid hand^ 
I him and incited the others. I do not recollect the 
lines of the delinquents, nor is it material to the narra- 
te that I should, but when I asked if they had any 
jfence, or if they wished to make any statement, the 
agleader addressed me to the following effect — 

** I thought, your worship, that he was after swearing 
jainst the priest, or I wouldn't have laid a finger on 
.m. It was all a mistake, and we never intended to 
reak the shop window. Indeed he broke that himself 
ying to get away. Moreover, if what was done wa« 
rong, I have been well punished for it already." 

I immediately designated the excuse alleged by the 
risoner as an aggravation of his offence, for if the person 
stacked had been a witness, the violence used towards 
im tended to defeat public justice, and to substitute 
light for right, making anarchy predominant, I added 
lat I did not understand the allegation of the prisoner, 
lat he had been already punished for his gross miscon*^ 
uct, and I wished him to explain. 

" Tour worship," he replied, ** I am a carpenter, and I 
ras going to buy some timber for repairs to a house at 
andycove. I had two sovereigns and a half in a little 
rather purse in ray waistcoat pocket. As soon as I was 
rought into the police-station, I missed the money, and 

have no doubt but my pockets were picked in the 
rowd* and during the confusion." 

Wishing to take a short interval for considering whether 
should adjudicate summarily, or send the case for trial 
t the Quarter Sessions, I postponed it for a week, urging 
be police to detect, if possible, the girl who had caused 
be tumult and assault, and I allowed the prisoners to be 
ischarged from custody on giving ample bail for their 
B-appearance, and proceeded to take the evidence adduced 
n the summons against the priest. When the business 
f the day was nearly concluded, two women were 
Tought in, having been taken in the act of assaulting a 
oung woman at the market, which, at the time, was 
ather crowded. The violence inflicted, "vas "^^rj t«^«i^i 

272 Twenty Years* Recollections. 

and it appeared that as the injured party was approaching 
the place where the others were standing, a girl, described 
as being about twenty years of age, explained, ** Here she 

comes, the — that has been swearing Father 

Pecherine*s life away." Immediately a scene similar to 
the one in the morning was acted by female performer^ 
the foremost being a large powerful woman, the wife of a 
publican in a neighbouiing village. The supposed wit- 
ness had been struck, kicked, and scratched ; her hair 
pulled, and her clothes torn, and the similarity of the 
two zealous manifestations was fully evinced by the publi- 
can's wife, declaring that *' she thought " the suffering 
party had been swearing against the priest, and she 
bitterly deplored the loss of three pounds of which her 
pocket had been picked in the ** scrimmage." Two other 
women were subsequently arrested who thought too hastily 
and acted too violently, but the inciter had managed to 
elude detection, and it was believed that immediately 
after her second exploit, she had hurried off to the railway 
and gone up to Dublin with her booty. I dealt summarily 
with the female prisoners, as the young woman whom 
they attacked was obliged to leave imoiediately for Man- 
chester, where she had procured some engagement as a 
domestic. I inflicted the very trifling penality of sixpence 
on each delinquent for the assault, but supplemented 
each conviction with two pounds costs to the party assailed. 
This decision, in reference to the costs, was extremely re- 
pugnant to the feelings of those against whom it was 
awarded. It was at once pronounced to be hard, and they 
declared their total inability to pay so much for a " little 
mistake," and their disapproval of my judgment was 
greatly augmented by the alternative which was left to 
their option of two months' imprisonment with hard 

The fines and costs were almost immediately paid, and 
I believe they were defrayed by a subscription. On the 
newsboy's case being resumed, he declined all further 
prosecution, and declared that he had been sufficiently 
remunerated. The girl who had incited the attacks was 

The City Militia. 273 

letected in the act of picking a pocket in a place of 
vorship at Kingstown, about a fortnight after the occur- 
'ence which I have detailed. She was not brought before 
ne, but having been committed for trial by Mr. Wyse, 
ler delinquencies procured her "a complete retirement 
rom business" for seven years. She was not an un- 
;hrifty thief, for it appeared at her trial that a savings' 
>ank book was found on searching her lodgings, in which 
637 were entered to her credit. It occurs to me that the 
lame of this culprit was Catherine Gaffney. Dishonesty 
s very seldom associated with frugality. I have heard, 
luring my magisterial experience, of only two instances 
Df the union of such tendencies. I have already men- 
tioned one. The other was a man named John Donohoe, 
ft shop porter in the employment of the late Alderman 
Batler, in Christ Church Place. He was convicted, in 
B^ebruary, 1853, of five distinct larcenies on his master's 
premises ; and whilst he was robbing on every possible 
opportunity, he had £64 in a savings' bank. 


At the commencement of the Crimean War, the militia 
regiments of the United Kingdom were embodied. The 
City of Dublin Light Infantry and Artillery and the 
Dounty regiment were almost entirely raised in the metro- 
politan district. Recruiting for the line was also very 
briskly pursued htire, and I can safely and deliberately 
state, that the military enrolments relieved our district of 
a great number of loose characters, whose abstraction was 
very salutary to our community. When the city militia 
became sufficiently strong for active service, they were 
embarked at Kingstown for Liverpool in a large steamer. 
I was on the jetty, and I do not think the English lan- 
guage could supply any opprobrious term that was not 
loudly ventilated in reference to me. The copious appli- 
cation of every variety of invective was really amusing to 
me, and it was only noticed by a frequent smile or an 
occasional laugh. It was remarked by one, that '' if tha 

274 Tfventt^ Years' Recollections. 

-1 didn't take owld Porter, we might as well be 

without a d 1 at all;" but another expressed hii 

opinion, "that the d 1 was in no hurry to grip the 

owld rascal, as he was certain to get him at last." I am 
sure, however, that if another police magistrate had been 
also present, he would have been considered fully entitled 
to participate equally in the compliments which I mono- 
polized, and which I only notice in the hope that some 
remarks which I intend to submit to my readers in a sub- 
sequent page may be considered interesting, and perhaps, 
I may add, important. 



An infantry regiment of the line was erabaiiced at 
Kingstown in a very capacious steamer, I believe the 
Medusa, for Gibraltar or Malta. There was a large qasn- 
tity of baggage which the men were actively engaged in 
conveying on board and stowing away. I was sauntering 
on the jetty when, at one o'clock, they were directed "to 
knock off for dinner." The meal was served on deck, and 
consisted of soup, bread, and meat, and the recipients 
availed themselves of every position in which they could 
speedily enjoy their repast. The circular seat around the 
window on the quarter-deck was fully occupied. The 
soup was brought up in large tin basins, and the bread 
was amply supplied, ready cut, from wicker baskets. One 
of the men who occupied the circular seat, seeing a basket 
of bread placed almost within his reach, stood up, ad- 
vanced about a yard, and having procured what he re- 
quired, stepped backward to resume his place. Mean- 
while, one of the attendants had placed a large vessel of 
soup on the portion of the bench apparently vacant, and 
the soldier sat down in it. With a loud scream, indica- 
tive of acute pain, he rushed to the tafferel, and plunged 
into the sea. He was immediately rescued from the risk 
of drowning, and having been brought on board, was sent 
below for medical treatment, and to get his wet clothes 
changed. I saw him on deck in the coarse of the after- 

Sailors Leaving their Ship. 275 

)on, and he stated that he was suffering very little, and 
at he would be " all right" very soon. Unless the tem- 
irature of the soup was below scalding heat, the ins tan - 
neous application of the cold water, although of a saline 
Laracter, must have been extremely efficacious. 


A large ship was quartered to convey the head-quarters 
' the 11th hussars from Kingstown to Balaklava. A 
msiderable number of horses were embarked, and there 
ere slings fastened to the roof and passing under each 
limal's body, which supported him whilst sleeping, but 
Lthout allowing him to lie down. All arrangements for 
lling had been completed, A steamer was provided to 
w the vessell to the outside of the Kish Bank, and the 
ind was as favorable as possible for proceeding down the 
aannel. The captain announced, about ten o'clock, a.m., 
at he would leave at noon, whereupon three of his crew 
ked him to defer his departure until the next day, and 

allow them to spend the intermediate time ashore. On 
s refusal, they required him to hoist a signal, which, to 
e best of my recollection, was a blue shirty at the fore- 
p, and he complied with their demand, inasmuch as, 
icording to his statement to me, his refusal would subject 
m to most severe penal consequences. The signal de- 
>ted that there were persons on board willing to serve 

the Royal Navy ; and as soon as it was displayed, a 
3Utenant who was stationed at Kingstown, on the duty 
* naval recruiting, went on board, and was informed by 
le three sailors that they were desirous of joining his 
!rvice. He acceded to their application, and the captain 
»and himself unable to put to sea for want of sufficient 
studs, and without any expectation of being able to supply 
le deficiency for some days. In this emergency, he ap- 
iied to me to have the men treated as wilful absconders, 
id to send them back to the ship. I had a communi* 
ition with the lieutenant, whose name, I think, was 
Lenderson ; and whilst he fully admitted the hardship oC 

276 Twenty Yeari EecoUections. 

which the captain complained, he declared that his orders 
were so stringently imperative that he could exercise no 
discretion, and had no alternative course to adopt. I ob- 
served that by retaining the men there would be a serious 
injury inflicted by one department of the public service 
on another, and that it amounted to military exertion 
being paralyzed by naval interference. He agreed with 
me as to the injurious effect of having the ship detained, 
but declared that he was unable to prevent it. I said that 
under the circumstances, 1 was inclined to have the men 
taken and sent back to the vessel from which they had 
virtually absconded. To this he replied, that he would 
offer no resistance to the execution of any warrant or order 
that I might issue, but that he would report the proceeding 
to the Admiralty. Thereupon, I suggested to the captain 
to have the ship taken from alongside the jetty to the 
centre of the harbour, and to stop any further communi- 
cation with the shore. This was immediately done, and 
I then sent a warrant for the seamen, and had them con* 
veyed on board, having previously advised them to go of 
their own accord, which they declined doing, with the inti- 
mation that if they ever returned to Ireland, they would 
smash every bone in my body, even if they were to be 
hanged the next minute for killing such a d- '>d old 
scoundrel. When they arrived at the ship, they told 
the captain that they would not do any duty, to which 
he replied that, whilst they refused to work, they need 
not expect to get any rations. The rest of the crew 
disapproved of their conduct, and I believe that they 
soon became reconciled to a resumption of duty. The 
lieutenant informed me, in a few days after the traasat^- 
tion, that he had fully reported the circumstances to the 
Admiralty, and that they approved of the course I had 
adopted, and exonerated him from any censure. I was 
subsequently informed by him, that on the arrival of 
the ship at Balaklava, she was boarded by a party from 
the flag-ship, and the officer in command produced the 
documents incident to the enlistment of the three men 
M Kingstown, and claimed \jQftm «j& \i^V«i^^ to the 

Effects of Etdistment, 211 

^maral servicje. They had, however, the advantage of 
. being allowed their pay, as seamen in the Queen's ser- 
~ vice, from the date of their enrolment at Kingstown,. 
^ and they also had their wages from the vessel in which 
^ they had been employed during the voyage to the Crimea. . 
* None of them have returned as yet to realize their fearful 
"^ mtention on him whom they designated " a d d old 

scoundrel ; " and he never entertained the slightest appre- 
" hensions of any violent commentary on the course he 

adopted towards them. 



In one of the preceding pages I stated that '^ the military 
enrolments relieved our district of a great number of 
loose characters, whose abstraction was very salutary to 
our community." I subsequently expressed an intention 
tio submit to my readers '^ some remarks that might be 
considered interesting, and perhaps important." 

It is unnecessary to particularise the numerous varieties 
of objectionable tendencies and habits, any of which will 
be considered sufficient to constitute the person exhibiting 
them ^' an undoubted scamp." In Dublin and its suburban 
districts, society has never been free from the evils inci- 
dent to the existence of such disreputable characters ; 
but I fully believe that we are not more tainted by them 
than any other part of the United Kingdom of equal ex- 
t.ent and population. The three regiments of militia 
embodied at the commencement of the Crimean war re- 
lieved us of some hundreds of loose, disorderly, or dis* 
lionest fellows, the riddance of whom produced a very 
desirable decrease in the custody case^ of out ^q^<:.^*^c^\^Vi^» 

278 Twenty leare RecoUectums. 

However, at the termination of the war, those regiments 
were brought back, and disembodied in the locality where 
they had been raised ; and many persons might reasooa- 
bly expect very disagreeable and injurious results from 
-the return of those whose departure was regarded as 8 
happy riddance by the community from which they had 
been abstracted. But very few instances occurred of the 
discharged militia-men relapsing into disreputable habits 
and criminal practices. Military service had produced a 
great and most desirable reformatory effect. Supervision, 
strict without unnecessary severity, with the adjuncts of 
regular and wholesome diet, comfortable clothing and 
personal cleanliness, emulation in the efficient discharge 
of duty, and the incitements arising from the preference 
accorded in various minor appointments and employments 
to the weU-conducted soldier — all these, together with a 
change from the scene of previous improprieties and dis- 
reputable associations, strongly ' tended to generate a 
desire for improvement, and the acquisition of a new 
character. Similar results were observable in reference 
to the last enrolment and subsequent disembodiment of 
those regiments consequent on the outbreak and suppres- 
sion of the Indian mutiny. I wrote to the late Lord 
Herbert of Lea, then Mr. Sydney Herbert, and Secretary 
of State for War, in reference to the reformatory results, 
which I attributed to military influence. He iread my 
letter in the House of Commons when moving the army 
estimates, and excited much laughter by stating that he 
did not think it expedient to mention the name of the 
writer or the regiments to which the communication re- 

My eldest son was a lieutenant in the County of Dublin 
Militia, which, soon after being embodied, was stationed at 
Waterford. One morning he was crossing the barrack yard 
from his quarters, to serve on a regimental court-martial, 
before which some disorderly or insubordinate charactert 
were to be brought, when he was accosted by the wife 
of one of the delinquents. She earnestly besought him 
^ot to he very severe on ^' pooi "Larq " «cA xWi it "would be 

Martial Tendencies., 279 

a hardship if he got worse treatment in Waterford than 
he*d get in Dublin for a little spree. She added, ^' The 
owld gentleman, your father, long life to him, never put 
the poor fellow up for more than a week at a time." 


During the period of my magisterial duty, I almost in- 
variably discharged the afternoon business, by an arrange* 
ment with my colleagues, which tended to their conye> 
nience and mine. The attestations of recruits were very 
seldom taken in the morning, and consequently they were 
generally made before me. At the commencement of the 
Crimean war, recruiting was yery rife, and I was fre- 
quently appealed to by the recruit as to the particular 
place in which the regiment for which he was enlisted 
was stationed, inasmuch as he had bargained to be sent 
** where the fighting was going on." This desire could 
not be attributed to any excitement arising from sudden 
caprice or whim, or from indulgence in liquor, for the 
attestation was never administered until twenty-four 
hours had elapsed after enlisting, and unless the recruit 
appeared perfectly sober, and aware of the responsibility 
which, with his own free will, he was required to assume. 

There was a man named Roger Tobin, who lived some- 
where about the classic locality of Stoneybatter. He 
appeared to be about twenty-five years of age, tall, strong, 
intelligent, healthy, and handsome. There were at least 
a dozen public-houses which the recruiting sergeants fre- 
quently visited at the time of the Crimean campaign, 
being then in quest of the martial spirits to whom pay, 
booty, promotion, and military glory were promised as 
certain acquisitions, all considerations of danger or death 
being left immentioned and ignored as improbable or im- 
possible. Roger would enter one of these houses, having 
previously ascertained that the sergeant had not yet 
arrived, and he would locate himself in a chair or on a 
bench close to a table, and order some moderate refresh- 
ment. He manifested an intense anxi^Xi^ «a \.o >Xi^ \sl<c^ 

280 Twenty Tear^ lUedUdions. 

recent news from the seat of war, and generally succeeded 
in making the proceedings of our army the subject of 
conversation amongst the persons present. When the 
collector of future heroes appeared, he was sure to be 
greeted by Roger with the warmest wishes for his success 
in providing gallant hearts and strong hands to repel the 
encroachments of Russia. The poor Poles would be com- 
miserated, and our brave French allies eulogised. Eveiy 
topic calculated to excite martial feelings would be ad* 
▼erted to by the enthusiastic Roger. Such expresaions 
would naturally lead the sergeant to conclude that be 
might calculate on one recruit accompanying him back to 
barracks, and his request or suggestion of immediate 
enlistment met with a ready acquiescence. The magio 
shilling having been paid, the new recruit would spend il 
in an additional libation, and address an earnest exhorta- 
tion to any young fellows then present to follow bis 
example. The sergeant would not be slow in giving a 
further advance, the application of which to convivial 
purposes might procure him two or three additional adhe- 
rents. Ten shillings, or perhaps more, having been 
joyously spent, Roger was informed that he was to accom* 
pany the sergeant, and any others who had joined, and 
receive accommodation in the barrack, from whence he 
would be brought next day to the police-court for attesta- 
tion. Promptly acceding to this direction, and raising his 
fine manly figure, he left the table, and enabled the dis- 
gusted sergeant to perceive that his recruit was dub* 
footed, and totally incapable of ever being put in marching 
order. How the expenses incurred were afterwards liqui* 
dated, whether the sergeant was the loser, or the liability 
devolved on the recruiting department, I am unable to 
state, but I fully believe that Roger repeated the same 
trick on many occasions. It would seem that each ser- 
geant did not wish to be the last victim, and consequently 
none of them disclosed the deception to the new oomerSi 
or to those in other parts of the metropolitan district* 
Roger's game was spoiled by a warning communicated to 
the recruiting stations from t\i^ "^Xv^, 

The She Barracks 281 


When the Kichmond Barracks were built at Golden 
Bridge, they were intended to afford ample aecommoda- 
iion for more than an entire regiment. There were also 
barracks at Island Bridge, and the distance between both 
was about half a mile. The former were generally occu^ 
pied by infantry, and the latter by artillery. A person in 
the vicinity had a large building constructed through a 
speculative motive of a very extraordinary kind. He was 
aware that soldiers marrying without leave, or whose 
wives were dishonest, turbulent, quarrelsome^ slovenly^ or 
habitually intemperate, were not allowed to bring such 
objectionable characters into the regim«*ntal quarters. He 
consequently calculated that he would find no difficulty itk 
having his premises occupied by tenants, to whose habits 
and morals he attached no importance, provided they paid 
the rent, and his expectations were not disappoinled^ 
His apartments were no sooner vacated by the incorrigible 
termagants of one regiment, than a succession of vixena 
was supplied from another to fill the unedifying edifice. 
The proprietor had not appropriated any particular name 
to the building, but it became speedily known in the dis-^ 
triot under the designation of '< The She Barracks." In 
the southern division of the police districts, there were 
five extensive military barracks, and 1 can unhesitatingly 
declare, that the cases supplied for police intervention or 
magisterial decision from them all, were completely out-* 
numbered by those derived from the comparatively 
diminutive limits of the structure designed for the use 
and associated with the name of the softer sex. The de- 
tails of the various charges and summonses in which 
inmates of these premises were compromised, would 
Beither be instructive nor amusing, but I cannot ever 
forget a case in which two women, the wives of artillery-^ 
men, appeared, on summons and cross-summons, to swear 
against each other to the greatest extent of culpability. 
Each of them imputed to her adversary the inclination 
and avowed intention to oonumt every oSexv^ ^i ^ xv^^\X 

282 Twenty years Becollections. 

or malicious description, and neither came nnproyided 
with witnesses ready to surmount the most elevated pinna- 
cles of exaggeration. Whilst this auction of swearing was 
in progress, the husbands of the two inmates of the She 
Barracks were seated together, quietly listening to the 
proceedings, apparently on \QTy friendly terms with each 
other, and not evincing any anxiety for the success of 
their respective consorts. At the close, I directed the in- 
formations of the parties to be engrossed, and stated that 
I would commit both for a month, unless they respectiTdj 
found a surety in five pounds for their future good be* 
haviour. I added, that as they were strangers, I did not 
suppose they could easily find bail amongst their neigh- 
bours, and that I was satisfied to take the husband of each 
as a surety for his wife. Immediately I was addressed 
by one of the artillerymen to the following purport : — 

'* May it please your honor, I'm only a private soldio', 
and where would I get five pounds in a day or two, when 
they begin again. Besides, if I was a fit bail, I would 
sooner be bound for his wife's behaviour than for my own 
wife's. Tis best to let them go." Then turning to his 
comrade, he added, ^' Come, Sam, we're likely to have a 
quiet month while they're both up." 

Nevertheless, he was disappointed, for the two viragoes, 
acting on the suggestion of an attorney who had been 
engaged in the case, came almost immediately to terms, 
and neither of them would make an information. They 
were consequently liberated, and instead of having a quiet 
month, I am sure that the artillery men had, during that 
time, to undergo some heavy domestic bombardments. 


The regular military establishments in our district pro- 
duced very few cases for decision by the civil authorities. 
I am not able to state the exact strength of the Dublin 
garrison, but I believe that it is the largest in the United 
Kingdom, and that the seven barracks never contain less 
than five thousand men of a\i xmiVl^ «!i^ «tmu Since the 

An Artillery Amazon. 283 

commencement of the present century, this city has had 
quartered within its limits or immediate suburbs every re- 
gular regiment in the service, and large bodies of militia. 
In 1813, a private dragoon named Tuite deserted, and on 
a Sunday morning stopped a gentleman named Goulding 
on South Circular Koad, near Portobello, for the purpose 
of robbing him. The offence had a fatal conclusion, for 
Goulding was shot through the heart, and the murderer 
was apprehended and executed. After his conviction he 
acknowledged his guilt, but declared that he intended only 
to rob, and that the discharge of the pistol was occasioned 
by his trepidation. In 1818, a corporal named Alliard 
was indicted for murdering a woman named Flood, in a 
cellar in Thomas Street, and he was acquitted. These 
two cases constituted all the capital charges preferred 
against soldiers before civil tribunals in our district from 
1800 to the present time. During my magistrature of 
upwards of twenty years' duration, I had to send two pri- 
vate soldiers for trial on a charge of passing base coin, 
and one of them was convicted. I had no cognizance or 
knowledge of offences purely military as to their nature or 
number. Whenever a soldier was found on a public 
thoroughfare in a state of intoxication, he was taken by 
the police, and when sober, sent by magisterial order to 
the officer commanding at his quarters ; but the number 
of such captures was very inconsiderable. Indeed if the 
entire popidation of the district had been strictly similar 
to the military in their habits and conduct, my office 
would have been almost a sinecure. 


There was an affair brought under my cognizance about 
seven years previous to my retirement, of which I have a 
perfect recollection, and in which, I am free to confess, 
I busied myself beyond my magisterial duties for mere 
amusement. An artillery soldier strolled into town from 
his barracks at Portobello, and having indulged freely in 
liquor^ betook himself to a house in ^oyr Yaxa^q^^^^^^^t 

234 Twenty Yfars^ RecoUectionn, 

Street, about ten o'clock at night. He wa9 unable to 
return to his quarters, and having been undressed, vas 
placed in bed to sleep ofif his intoxication. The inmates 
of the house were by no means of a reputable description, 
and amongst them was a female unusually tall in stature, 
and with proportional amplitude of figure. In a sudden 
whim, she arrayed herself in the uniform of the sleeping 
soldier, and set out on a nocturnal promenade, to the isAr 
nite amusement of her associates, by some of whom she 
was accompanied. Their obstreperous merriment attracted 
the attention of the police, and eventuated in the arrest of 
the amazon. On my arrival at the police-court on the fol- 
lowing morning, I was apprised of the extraordinary charge 
which awaited my investigation ; and I immediately com- 
municated with a gentleman with whom I was personally 
acquainted, and who was in a high position connected 
with the Ordnance Office. He came to me, and we ar- 
ranged that I should not dispose of the case in the police* 
<;ourt until the circumstances were made known to the 
military authorities at Portobello. When the woman was 
brought before me, I directed a sergeant of police to take 
her in a covered vehicle to the barrack, and, in the mean- 
time, the artillery man was captured in Bow Lane by a 
party sent from the barracks , and as his own attire was 
not forthcoming, he was brought away in a cab, and with 
habiliments not altogether suitable to his sex or his sta- 
tion. The heroine was submitted to some of the women, 
who divested her of the martial appearance she had as- 
sumed, and transferred the garments to two non-commis-i 
sioned officers, who gave in return the clothes or impro- 
vised vestments that covered the soldier during his return 
to barracks. I did not inflict any further punishment on 
the woman, and I believe that the artillery man was not 
severely treated ; but I was informed by some of his officers 
that he was made the object of the most persistent banter 
and ridicule amongst his comrades, who accorded him the 
soubriquet of '* Mary Anne." I believe, indeed, that se» 
vere corporal punishment inflicted on his delinquency 
would not have deterred tlae otib^t ^olddi^t^ from the oom- 

A Colonel of Dragoons, 285 

mission of a similar error so effectually as the jests and 
sarcasms supplied from amongst themselves, and sug- 
gested by the appearance of one who had returned from 
his roving so very unsuitably. 


Before I pass from the recollections and favorable im* 
presiions produced by the almost uniform good conduct of 
the gallant members of our garrison, I am disposed to 
give my readers a short narrative, without any other com- 
ment than the expression of an opinion that it is one of 
the many instances in which fact appears stranger than 
fiction. A lady, the widow of a medical officer, having 
presented a memorial soliciting a commission for her son, 
received a reply appointing him to a regiment in one of 
our most distant colonies, and involving the necessity of 
his speedy departure from this country. At her request I 
interested myself to procure for him an outfit, promptly 
supplied, of excellent quality and of very reasonable price. 
It was furnished by Buckmaster, Malyn, and Co., of 
Dawson Street, who have also an extensive establishment 
in London. I had occasion to call two or three times 
during the execution of the order, and I was making one 
of those visits when two officers entered. On seeing them, 
Mr. Malyn said to me, '' This colonel is a most extraor- 
dinary man ; when he is gone I shall tell you why I say 
so." The officers were in the uniform of a heavy dragoon 
regiment ; one was the lieutenant-colonel, the other was the 
adjutant. The former was in face and figure such a man as 
I would consider that no painter or statuary would decline 
to accept as a faultless model for a splendid artistic produc- 
tion. His communication was very brief, but he appeared 
to be intelligent and courteous. When he departed, Mr. 
Malyn told me that he remembered him working on their 
shopboard, as a tailor, at their house in New Burlington 
Street, London; that he knew his business perfectly, 
being skilful, sober, and industrious. Nevertheless, he 
disliked such a sedentary occupation, and bein^ fond <^ 

286 Twenty Ytari EecoUections. 

equestrian exercise, enlisted in the dragoons. Having 
entered the service, his conduct was such as gained the 
approbation of his superiors, and he soon attained the rank 
of sergeant In active service he evinced patience, promp- 
titude, and courage, and the adjutancy having become 
vacant he was appointed to it, with a concomitant com- 
mission. Being thus entitled to be received in society as 
an officer and a gentleman, he gained respect and esteem 
in his new position, and also succeeded in marrjring a lady 
possessed of a very ample fortune, by which he was en- 
abled to expedite promotion whenever it could be acquired 
by purchase. His success would seem to have resulted 
from persistent good conduct, winning and retaining the 
favorable opinions of all who could materially aid his 
advancement. The most imaginative of our romaoce 
writers would certainly shrink from presenting for our 
perusal the ideal descent of a field-officer's epaulets upon 
the shoulders of a journeyman tailor. 


I have to notice an event which occurred in 1855, and 
was productive of most salutary results, not merely to the 
suburb in which it was effected, but to the entire city and 
county of Dublin ; I mean the abolition or suppression of 
Donny brook Fair. This excellent proceeding was effected 
at the instance and mainly by the exertions of Alderman 
Joseph Boyce, who was Lord Mayor of Dublin in the last- 
mentioned year. It would be almost impossible to describe 
the scenes of drunkenness, violence, gambling, and gross 
indecency that characterized an entire week in the month 
of August, every year whilst "The Brook" afforded its 
immoral attractions, causing our prisons to be immediately 
crowded with loose, disorderly, or dishonest characters, so 
as to resemble hospitals in a locality suddenly visited by 
an epidemic or contagious distemper, I do not believe 
that, for many years previous to its suppression, Donny- 
brook Fair was ever held without being the direct or in- 
direct cause of a life or lives being lost. It lasted for a 

Donnyhrook Fair, 287 

week ; and the greatest intemperance and Tiolence seemed 
to be specially displayed on the day known as "the Walk- 
ing Sunday." I visited the fair on several occasions in my 
days of boyhood, and I can recollect some sad accidents in 
which lives were lost or limbs fractured by vehicles having 
been driven furiously by drunken " jarveys.** I have seen 
the body of a female taken out of a mill-race close to the 
fair green, into which she had fallen in a state of intoxica- 
tion. I witnessed a very furious encounter on the bridge 
between coal-porters and some other class of combatants, 
in which a man was thrown over the battlement and 
killed by the fall ; but the worst experience that I had of 
Donny brook was in 1 820, when an amiable and most in- 
offensive young gentleman, named James Rogerson, was 
walking beside me through the main street of the village, 
about eight o'clock in the evening, and was struck in the 
head by a large stone thrown at another person. He was 
felled by the blow, and was raised in a state of insensi- 
bility. After he had revived a little, I took him in a 
covered car to his father's residence in William Street, 
where he died in a few days from the effects of the injury, 
and the perpetrator of the fatal assault was never made 
amenable for the offence. From the time when I attained 
the police magistracy in 1844 until 1855, 1 had to deal 
with an ample share of the charges and summonses arising 
from the annual nuisance of Donnybrook Fair ; and I fully 
agreed with my colleagues in considering such duties as 
<^ moral scavenging ;" and just as pedestrians might apolo- 
gise for mud-covered feet or bespattered garments being 
unavoidable in filthy thoroughfares, so the delinquencies 
arising from the various evil excitements abundantly 
offered in the locality where they occurred, were almost 
invariably imputed to the offender having unfortunately 
gone to " The Brook." I must admit that in disposing of 
drunken or disorderly cases, I was often influenced by the 
consideration that when such an annual abomination was 
tolerated in a civilized community, it was a ground for 
slightly mitigating the punishments incurred by yielding 
to its abundant temptations. 

iS8 Twenty Veari Recollections. 

In the early pages of these reminiscences I mentioned 
that a Lord Lieutenant of Ireland had dined in a tent at 
Donnybrook Fair. I have heard doubts expressed as to 
the correctness of such a statement. I now reiterate it^ 
adding that it occurred in 1808, in the viceroy alty of the 
Duke of Richmond. It was noticed in several newspapers 
of the time, but not with the slightest expression of dis- 
approval. It was almost an established custom for the 
Lord Mayor and Sheriffs, with many of the aldermen and 
common council, to dine at the fair, but their festivities 
were enjoyed in a house. The place was then in the dtj 
of Dublin, but it has since, along with a large adjoining 
district, been added to the county of Dublin as r^|ards 
any civil or criminal jurisdiction, but the parliamentary 
franchises are available in the city, although the district 
forms no portion of it, and possesses no municipal piiyi- 
leges whatever. This arrangement, or perhaps it might 
be termed '^ derangement," occurred in 1832. I shall not 
digress into any remarks on local changes of a pohticai 
nature, but resume my recollections of the fair now so 
properly abolished. 

Almost every tent displayed the proprietor's name, and 
generally the place of his residence, to induce visiters, 
from the same direction, to give him a preference. Colored 
signs were frequently exhibited, which at night became 
transparencies by a lamp being placed behind each. On 
one might be seen the representation of a fellow apparently 
dancing with a young female, whilst tmderneath was 
inscribed — 

" Here Paddy comes to have a swig, 
A better ono he never took ; 
And now he*ll dance an Irish jig 
. With Dolly Dunne of Donnybrook.** 

I recollect another sign representing a bee-hive, for the 
exhibition of which no reason of an industrial nature was 
adduced. It displayed the following invitation :— - 

** In this hive we 're all alive, 

Good whisky makes us funny ; 
So don 't pass by, but stop and try 
The sweein^Bs ol out YLQU'b^O\ 

Tlie Liquor Traffic. 289 

Such were some instances of the allurements to partici- 
pate in dissipations then not merely permitted, but en- 
couraged, but which have happily been prevented from 
continuing their periodical infractions of public peace, and 
their interruptions of quietude and industry. I shall con- 
clude my observations on the subject by quoting a verse 
of one of Ned Lysajght's songs, which tends strongly to 
prove that drunken violence was not merely tolerated, but 
made the occasion of a laudatory strain— 

** Whoe'er had the luck to see Donnybrook Fair, 
An Irishman, all in his glory, was there, 

With his sprig of shillelagh and shamrock so green. 
His clothes spic and span new, without e*er a speck, 
A neat Barcelona* entwined on his neck ; 
He goes into a tent and he spends half-a-crown. 
He comes ont, meets a friend, and for love knocks him downf 

With his sprig of shillelagh and shamrock so green." 

I sincerely hope that the " glory *' derived from Donny- 
brook Fair has been for ever quenched, and that future in- 
dications of love for a friend will not require to be illus* 
trated by the application of a shillelagh. Some of my 
readers may not be aware that this designation of a cudgel 
is derived from a barony named Shillelagh in the County 
of Wicklow, which has been celebrated for its oak woods 
from a very remote period. I believe at present they are 
the property of Earl Fitzwilliam ; and I have frequently 
heard that the timber contained in the roof of West- 
minster Hall was supplied from them. I am not aware, 
however, that the propinquity of such material has pro- 
duced any quarrelsome or combative tendencies amongst 
the senators or legal practitioners who frequent the 


I am disposed to offer here a few observations in refer- 
ence to the liquor traffic, and the effect of the laws by 

* A showy description of silk handkerchief, supposc'l to be 
derived from a Spanish city, and associated with iu u«c\xy6. 

290 Twenty Ytari BecoUecUons. 

which it is regulated. I have heard the commission of 
every offence in which violence was a principal ingredient, 
attributed to the demoralising and infuriating indolgeDoe 
in strong drinks. I am convinced, by my official expe- 
rience, that hundreds of crimes unattended with actual 
violence, have also originated in the debasing craving for 
stimulating liquors. Frauds and thefts have been abaa- 
dantly committed from such an incentive ; and even affec- 
tion has been extinguished by its loathsome power so 
completely, as to make the criminality and degrading 
infamy of a son or daughter, subsidiary to the gratification 
of intemperate habits ; and the result of recent legislation 
has certainly neither remedied, nor in my humble opinion 
mitigated, the prevalence of drunkenness and its multi- 
farious concomitant evils. We are informed that a strict 
observance of the statute prohibiting the opening of 
public-houses on Sunday before two o'clock, p.m., has 
been enforced, and notwithstanding that regulation, we 
see numerous cases of intoxication in our thoroughfares 
two or three hours before the publicans open. On a 
Sunday in the present year, a servant-man lefl; my house 
detween ten and eleven o'clock, in the forenoon, and re- 
turned, or rather was brought back, in less than two hours 
completely intoxicated. In such a case the law is only 
operative in restraining the regular licensed trader. To 
deal with those infractions of the law and of public 
decency, the visitorial powers of the police and constabu- 
lary should be greatly extended; and the penalties 
incident to a conviction for the illicit traffic should be 
augmented to at least fourfold the amount now authorisedi 
with the alternative, in case of non-payment, of three or 
four months' imprisonment with hard labor. In the pre- 
ceding pages I have mentioned a conviction for smuggling 
tobacco, on which a penalty of one hundred pounds or 
six months' imprisonment was awarded. I recollect a 
detection of an illicit still in a house on Haddington £oad, 
in reference to which the Excise authorities required that 
every adult found on the premises should be subjected to 
very severe penalties, or imprisonment for some months ; 

The College Row. 291 

itkd when T declined to convict a young woman who was 
cashing clothes in the dwelling-house, and who was not 
i resident, but merely employed there occasionally, the 
professional gentlemen engaged in the prosecution were 
very dissatisfied with my decision. Offences against the 
Castoms or Excise, which tend to withhold or lessen the 
revenue, even in the slightest degree, are made legally 
liable to penal consequences, compared with which the 
infractions of laws intended to protect the community 
from the innumerable evils generated by intemperance, 
may be regarded as trifling indiscretions, undeserving of 
strict and severe repression. If a trader sends forth from 
bis premises one hundred drunken customers, to exhibit 
every phase of violent or indecent behaviour, his conduct 
is not visited with one-tenth of the punishment* incurred 
by selling a glass of poteen whisky. 



The latter portion of my period of magisterial service was 
very scanty in the production of events worthy of being 
recorded. On the 12th of March, 1858, the Earl of Eg- 
linton arrived in Dublin to assume the Lord Lieutenancy, 
as successor to the Earl of Carlisle, who had leftj^on the 
8th of that month, in consequence of the dissolution of 
the Palmerston Ministry. I believe that in the respective 
selections of Lords Carlisle and Eglinton, the Liberal and 
Conservative administrations succeeded in giving to the 
Irish community functionaries deservedly popular with 
all ranks and conditions. I therefore consider it a subject 
of great regret that the entry of the latter nobleman, oa 
the day above mentioned, should have been attended with 
a riot in College Green, in which the police and the stu- 
dents of the University came into collision. The place of 

292 Twenty Years' Becolkctiona. 

the occurrence was not within the limits of the police 
division to which I was attached, but I happened to be 
in a house Teiy close to the scene, and had the fullest qv 
portunity of witnessing the entire affair. It commenc^ 
by the throwing of squibs and crackers from within the 
rails in front of the College, which rendered the horses of 
the mounted police and of a few dragoons very unquiet, 
and irritated some of the riders. I believe that amongst 
the persons engaged in annoying the police there were 
many who were not students. An attempt to repress 
forcibly the throwing of the squibs and crackers produced 
the addition of some stones to the missiles, and the affair 
eventuated in the reading of the Kiot Act by Colonel 
Browne, the Commissioner of Police, and the clearing of 
the space between the building and the front railing by 
an attack of the police, in which some severe blows were 
inflicted. Happily, none of them resulted in fatal or per* 
manent injury. A very lengthened investigation sup€^ 
vened, during which animosity and irritation almost en- 
tirely subsided, and were replaced by feelings of mutual 
kindness. I think that an extract from the proceedings, 
dated the 10th of April, may afford to my readers a most 
creditable and praiseworthy manifestation by the police 
and the students. I may mention that Mr. M'Donogh, 
Q.C., was engaged in the inquiry on the part of the 
collegians, when Colonel Browne expressed himself as 
follows : — 

" I am sure Mr. M'Donogh will not be displeased with 
me if I say that I thought the police, whom 1 consider a 
fine body of young men, had been ill-treated for an hour 
or two by a number of young gentlemen. They were 
on unpleasant duty, not of their own will ; and I was 
more annoyed to see them so treated than if there had 
been fifty dozen stones showered on myself. They, too, 
were irritated at seeing stones thrown at me. All I nowwish 
to say is this, I take the entire responsibility of all that 
occurred on myself. (Sensation.) I gave the order, and 
ought to be accountable for everything that happened. It 
is not because two or three of the men have, and no 

The College Rote. 293 

loubt did, act intemperately, that the others should be 
punished. The whole concera should be throwa on me ; 
Mid I hope the collegians will cast it on me, and forgive 
me. I have a great regard for the collegians ; and have 
always had, and to the last moment of my life I shall re- 
member the kindness with which they have treated me. 
I thought that a good feeling existed between my men 
and them, and I think there did. I feel regret for what 
has occurred — regret that will go down with me to my 
grave, and I say none but myself alone ought to bear the 
consequences of what has occurred." 

Mr. M*Donogh — " After that expression of regret, 
Colonel Browne, I, as a gentleman, shall not ask you 
another question.'' (Loud expression of approbation from 
the students and others present.) 

Mr. M'Dermot, (Police Magistrate) — '* I hope the lan- 
groage of Colonel Browne will be received in the spirit in 
which it is offered. It is as creditable to him as the 
ebullition of feeling which we have just heard, and at 
which I do not wonder, is creditable to the students of 
Trinity College." 

Mr. M^Donogh — "And I am proud and happy that 
my young friends have shown how they can feel." 

The applause was continued for some time longer. 
Colonel Browne, who seemed to be altogether overcome 
by emotion, retired amidst warm demonstrations of regard. 
No ulterior proceedings were adopted, and thus terminated 
the only collision or misunderstanding between the civil 
authorities and the students of the University that oc- 
curred from the commencement of my magisterial duties 
in 1841 to the present time. Colonel Browne retired from 
office in 1858, upon a pension of £800 per annum. He 
has also the half-pay of a lieutenant-colonel, and is a 
Companion of the Bath. He is decorated with the Penin- 
sular medal for military service in the army under 
Wellington in his early Spanish campaigns. *« He was suc- 
ceeded as Commissioner of Police by Colonel Lake, whose 
services have been highly and deservedly appreciated, 
especially in the defence of Kars, wben b^^\&^<^^ Vj ^^ 

294 Twenty Yean^ Becollections. 

Almost immediately after the collision between the 
police and the collegians, a song was composed, in re- 
ference to the affair, by a gentleman who has acquired by 
it and several other productions of a comic character, a 
reputation which obtains for him a most enthusiastic re- 
ception in the choicest convivial reimions. He introdnces 
the most extravagant fictions, and enunciates them with sod 
apparent seriousness, as suffices completely to dissolve tbe 
gravity of his hearers. His song on the *' College Row* 
imputes the ^* doleful tragedy " to the resentment of the 
Duchess of Sutherland, Lord Carlisle's sister, consequent on 
his loss of the Lord Lieutenancy, and the appointment of 
Lord Eglinton. She communicates by telegrams with the 
Commissioners of Police, and remits five hundred poimdi 
to supply their force with ardent spirits, closing the com- 
munication with an injunction, that in case of any enthu- 
siasm being manifested by the students on the public 
entry of Eglinton, they should be at once subjected to 
the most unsparing application of swords, bartons, and 
bayonets. The ballad describes the carnage provoked by 
the explosion of a few crackers and squibs, as being fully 
equal to the worst excesses of our Indian sepoys in their 
mutinous massacres. I have heard it sung in the pre- 
sence of Colonel Brown and other police functionaries; 
and from all who heard its fearful but fictitious details, 
it elicited the utmost merriment. I have been informed 
that in his subsequent viceroyalty, Lord Carlisle and hs 
Chief Secretary had it frequently sung by the author, who 
is now connected with the Dublin police in an important 
professional capacity. 


Shortly after the affair between the collegians and the 
police, a complaint preferred by the Crown solicitor was 
brought under my personal cognizance, and subsequently 
became the subject of a lyric production, in which it was 
almost impossible to determine whether exaggeration or 
action predominated. Tktii^ Yja& «^^xvjx\.vst m Cook Street 

The Cook Street Printer. 295 

remarkable for bodily deformity and mental acerbity. His 
trade almost entirely consisted in the publication of bal- 
lads, which were bought by itinerant vocalists, who came 
each evening to replenish their stocks of amatory, political, 
or comic productions. In proportion to the number of 
customers who crowded his shop and contended for a 
lipeedy supply, the publisher varied and multiplied his 
maledictions, and most impartially cursed and abused 
them all alike. His habitual vituperations were disre- 
garded or laughed at, and were generally ascribed to 
mental infirmity ; but he embarked in a speculation which 
brought him under the serious notice of the authorities as 
being intolerably offensive. He published an almanac, 
the marginal notes and memoranda of which were replete 
with sedition, and in which the public functionaries were 
grossly stigmatised. It happened that the corporation 
had effected a contract with the proprietor of a quarry in 
Wales for the supply of stone of a quality considered 
best adapted for the repair of the streets of Dublin, and 
the day on which the contract had been accepted by the 
civic body was noted in the almanac as the date of an in- 
famous preference of foreign production, and an exclusion 
of Irish industry and material through corrupt and debas- 
ing motives. This statement, however, constituted no 
portion whatever of the charges preferred before me, 
which consisted almost entirely of references to former 
attempts of a rebellious character, with expressions of 
deep regret for their failure, and hopes that the patriotic 
energies of the Irish nation would, in the next encounter 
prove more effective in crushing Saxon despotism than had 
been the efforts of the glorious Sarsfield, the noble Lord 
Edward, the martyred Emmett, or the more recent cham- 
pions of Hibernian freedom — O'Brien, Meagher, and 
Mitchell. Colonel Browne was not even aware of the 
proceedings before me having been instituted ; and Mr. 
Whiteside, the present Chief Justice, was never concerned 
in any case before me during my tenure of magisterial 
office. The printer of the almanac appeared on a summons 
to show cause why informations eiVioxiXdL xiOX \^ \a^^\^ 

296 Twenty Years' Recollections. 

against him, and returned for trial on numerous and deU- 
berate seditious statements published by him. The late 
Mr. John Adje Curran appeared as his counsel, and pro- 
posed to give sureties for his client's appearance to meet 
the charges preferred, if the Crown solicitor deemed it 
necessary to continue the prosecution, offering also to give 
up all copies of the almanac remaining in stock, and to 
abandon its future publication. The Crown solicitor, Mr. 
Kemmis, at once acceded to this proposal, and, on the 
sureties having been produced, I allowed the accused 
party to leave, and entered in the summons-book that the 
complaint was '* dismissed without prejudice." I did not 
manifest the slightest sympathy for the delinquent, but 
informed him that he owed his escape from severe punish- 
ment entirely to the lenity of the Crown solicitor, and not 
to any disinclination on my part to have him made 
seriously and severely responsible for his misconduct. In 
a few days he became the subject of a lyric panegyric, in 
which his prosecution was attributed to Colonel Browne 
and Mr. Whiteside, and the stoppage of the proceedings 
was ascribed to me and to Mr. Curran ; the course adopted 
by the latter gentleman being the only thread of truth in- 
terwoven in a web of fiction, and sung to an old Irish 
air, which I am not able to particularise. It has been 
entitled by an additional fiction — 


Tou gallant-hearted Irishmen, 

Come listen to my lay, 
The melancholy muse I woo, 

She comes in tears to-day. 
Oh Wirra ! Wirrasthrue, says she, 

Sare Dublin^s noblest bard 
Is took before his tyrants 

In the Lower Castle Yard. 

In Cook Street was our Printer bom. 

In Cook Street was he bred, 
The le«;ends of Hibernia's land 

His young ideas fed, 

A Question and Answer, 297 

How Brian Cora and Granyah too, 

Did Saxons disregard, 
And the flag of green once waved serene 

In the Upper Castle Yard. 

His first animadversions 

Were on the paving stones, 
Why sliould you 8end your cash to Wales, 

To Taffv or to Jones ? 
Why nut lay down, throughout the town, 

Tour Irish granite hard ? 
And macadamize the dirty spies 

In the Lower Castle Yard ? 

Colonel Browne, he being a Welshman, 

Swore by St. David's bones 
He 'd prosecute the Irishman 

Who dare oppose their stones. 
He ordered Whiteside to indict 

And carceratc the Bard ; 
Let him try, says he, Geology, 

In the Lower Castle Yard. 

But good luck to Frank Thorpe Porter, 

That expounder of the laws. 
Likewise to Adye Curran, 

Who was counsel in the cause. 
They tann*d the hide of long Whiteside, 

And did him disregard, 

And freed our Printer from his fangs, 

In the Lower Castle Yard. 


[ was occasionally sent for by the Chief Secretary of 
I Lord Lieutenant in reference to matters of a local 
ore on which it was desirable to obtain prompt and 
ifidential information. I cannot say that any of those 
ictionaries ever applied to me on a subject which I 
isidered -very important, and I was never informed 
at was the ultimate object of the inquiry. I believe 
t in several instances the wish was to acquire some 
ics or materials for replies to deputations. It was 
Lmated to me, in 1853, one day aboul twc^ q*^<;^y 

298 Twenty Tears^ BecoUectiona. 

that the Chief Secretary desired to see me immediately, 
and I accordingly proceeded to his office. He said that 
he wished to know whether the trade and commerce of 
Dublin was in a state of healthy progress, or of retrogres- 
sion as compared with the two previous years. I told 
him that the files of the Dublin Gazette would enable bim 
fully to ascertain the increase or decrease of bankruptcies 
within the city in the last year compared with any recent 
period, and that the Imports and Exports published under 
the sanction of the Customs authorities could be easily 
procured and examined. He declined to adopt the course 
I suggested as being complex, and requiring too mach 
time to ascertain its results ; and he Uien said that he 
wished me to come on the next day and tell him whether 
I believed that the general trade and commerce of Dublin 
were in a better or worse state during the past twelve 
months than they had been for the two previous years. I 
attended at the time appointed, and expressed a most 
decided opinion that the trading community had been far 
more prosperous in the latter period, and that I believed 
their business was one half greater than it had been dar- 
ing the terms with which it was to be compared. The 
Bight Honorable functionary asked me when I had 
arrived at such a conclusion ; to which I simply answered 
that my opinion had been formed since our last interview. 
I was then interrogated as to what documents I had ex- 
amined, or what class of traders I had consulted, to which 
I replied that I had nothing on the subject, and had 
spoken to a few traders merely as to certain commodities 
in which I was aware that they dealt. I was asked what 
commodities I meant, and the Secretary seemed rather 
surprised when I mentioned coarse papers and packing 
cordage, in which articles I was informed that they were 
doing an increased and increasing traffic. I added that 
when there was a brisk demand for such materials it de- 
noted that the sale of shop goods must be also brisk, just 
as extensive purchases of seeds, mianures, or tillage imple- 
ments, would indicate greater activity in agricultural or 
borticultUTSil pursuits. A. ^ouii^ ^<&xiX\&Tsii^\i^ ^ho acted 

A Barrister. 299 

as private or confidential secretary to the Chief Secretary, 
was present when I expressed such opinions and my 
reason for their adoption, and when his principal indulged 
in a laugh which was, perhaps, somewhat derisive of the 
importance I ascribed to wrapping papers and twine, he 
amply participated in the merriment. I then said that I 
might possibly augment their amusement by imparting 
the result of another inquiry which I had made, and 
which tended to confirm my previous statements. I 
had been informed, in almost all the pre-eminent musical 
establishments, that there had been a considerable in- 
crease in the sale of pianofortes, and I felt perfectly con- 
Tinced that a pianoforte was very rarely purchased by a 
person in embarrassed circumstances, whilst it was almost 
invariably considered a desirable addition to the domestic 
recreation of a comfortable and solvent family. This 
statement produced more laughter, and as the interview 
was not of a secret nature, my references to wrapping- 
paper, twine, and pianofortes, became sufficiently known 
to obtain for me a considerable amount of banter. The 
Secretary subsequently told me that several other persons 
whom he consulted gave him opinions similar to mine on 
the commercial state of Dublin, although their calcula- 
tions and inferences were derived from very different 
sources. I still entertain the impression that the grounds 
on which I formed my conclusion were by no means un- 
worthy of consideration. 


In some of the preceding pages I have mentioned several 
attorneys whose professional avocations were extensively 
connected with the police-courts, and whose conduct and 
character entitled them to our esteem and respect. Whilst 
they would endeavour to induce the magistrates to adopt 
the construction of a statute or by-law in the sense most 
favorable to their clients, they sedulously avoided the 
suppression or exaggeration of facts when seeking a miti- 
gation of punishment, or applying for the acce^taxifiA q£ 

300 Twenty Yeare^ RecoUecHons. 

bail There were, however, two or three professional men 
who OGcasionallj subjected us to the very disagreeable, 
perhaps I may say the disgusting, duty of listening to 
statements subsequently ascertained to be totally false, 
and which they were undoubtedly aware of being, un- 
founded. One gentleman, who was a member of my own 
profession, had a wonderful aptitude for citing cases pur- 
porting to have been decided in the English courts, and in 
complete accordance with the course which he was de- 
sirous we should pursue. We soon found that many of 
those cases were suppositious, and many others distorted 
and misrepresented. Our chief clerk, Mr. Cox, having 
assisted on a particular occasion in detecting several mis- 
quotations, observed, that if the learned counsel ever 
attained to the peerage his most appropriate title would 
be Lord Phibsborough.* 


There was another practitioner, an attorney, who was 
known by the nickname of ** Bluebottle," inasmuch as 
bis tendency was to taint whatever he touched, and to 
evince a preference for garbage. He happened to be pre- 
sent on one occasion, when a man and woman were 
charged before me '^ for creating a disturbance in Dame 
Street, and using abusive, insulting, and threatening lan- 
guage on the public thoroughfare." The woman stated 
that the man was her husband ; that he was in comforta- 
ble circumstances, but left her in destitution, and refused 
to contribute to her support. She produced a marriage 
certilicate and various other documents in support of her 
allegation, and I discharged the parties, with a caution 
against ventilating their domestic wrongs or differences in 
the public streets, suggesting to the female, that if she 
obtained admission to the South Union Workhouse as a 
destitute pauper, the guardians would make her husband 
responsible for deserting her, and rendering her a charge 
upon the rates. As her excitement and volubility ap- 

' A suburb of DubWn, pioivouwe^^ JU>&\k^tQi\]^« 

An Attorney, 301 

pcared likely to create more disturbance, if she and her 
husband went forth together, I directed her to leave at 
once, and suggested, on her depart ure, that the man 
might remain until she had left the court and its yicinity. 
When she went out, she was followed by Bluebottle, who 
accosted her at the foot of the stairs, and told her that he 
would take immediate steps to compel her husband to afford 
her a suitable maintenance. Affecting to sympathise deeply 
with a destitute and friendless female, he induced her to 
give him all her documents, and also a small photographic 
picture, in which she and her husband appeared holding 
each other by the right hand. He then desired her to go 
away, promising to meet her at the Lord Mayor's court 
on the following day. This conversation and arrange- 
ment occurred very close to the door of the custody- room, 
and was fully overheard by the constable in charge, oi 
whose proximity the ardent vindicator of the poor woman's 
wrongs had no knowledge or suspicion. When she de- 
parted. Bluebottle stepped up to the court, and beckoned 
to the husband, whom he brought to the precise spot 
where the previous conference had occurred. He then 
told him that he had obtained all the woman'n papers, the 
certificate and the picture, and that he was willing to give 
him a great bargain of the entire for one poimd. The 
man declared that all the cash in his possession amounted 
only to twelve shillings and sixpence, which he was wil- 
ing to pay for the articles. Bluebottle agreed to take the 
latter sum, and received it, but before he delivered the 
picture and documents, the constable emerged from the 
vestibule of the custody-room and arrested him. He was 
brought immediately before me in his genuine name of 
Bichard Walsh, and I had to decide whether the certiticate, 
picture, and letters he was about to dispose of, brought 
}iim under a culpable liability. The d3rd section of the 
5th Vic, sess. 2, chap. 24, enacts — 

** That every person who shall be brought before any of the 
divisional ja^tices, charged with having in his possession, or on 
his premises, with his knowledge, or conveying in any manner 
anything which may be reasonably sospected \o b^ %vA%\i oit >KSk.- 

302 Twenty Tears' EeooUectione. 

lawfally obtained, and who shall not give an account to the satis- 
faction of such justice how he came bj the same, shall be deemed 
guilty of a misdemeanor, and on conviction thereof before such 
justice or justices, shall be liable to a penalty not more than fi?e 
pounds, or in the discretion of the justice, may be imprisoned ii 
any gaol or house of correction within the police district, with or 
without hard labour, for any time not exceeding two calendar 

On the facts as proved before me, I made the picture 
and the certificate the subjects of a conviction for unlaw- 
ful possession, and sent Mr. Walsh for two months to the 
Bichmond Bridewell, to be kept during that time at hard 
labor. I declined to make anj order for returning the 
twelve shillings and sixpence to the man from whom it 
had been received, whose name, as well as I can recollect, 
was Crozier ; but his wife was put in possession of the 
articles which she had entrusted to the treacheroiu 
attorney. I believe that he was the only member of his 
profession on whom, since the commencement of the pre- 
sent century, a criminal conviction inflicted a disgrac^ol 
punishment in the metropolitan district. He was inclined 
to corpulence, and had a very plethoric appearance. In a 
few days after bis committal, I received a note from (he 
governor of the prison in the following terms : — 

<' In reference to the case of Kichard Walsh, committed hj 
you for two months, with hard labour, I beg leave to report that 
the medical officers of the prison think it would be dangerous to 
work a person of his age and full habit of body on the treadmill 
I believe, however, that I can make him perfectly available as an 
oakum*picker. I have the honor, &c, &c. 

This communication was entered in the official letter 
book of the police-court, and consequently became gene- 
rally known. The delinquent was a person of extreme 
effrontery, and the members of his profession considered 
him to be habitually supercilious and offensive. "When 
the term of his punishment was completed, he had^the 
almost incredible audacity to attempt to resume practice 

Gibraltar. 308 

in the criminal courts. None of the other attorneys would 
ict or associate with him, and his presence always pro- 
luced complaints against the '^ very disagreeable smell of 
>akum." He died, as I have been informed, uncum- 
tniserated and unaided, in extreme indigence. From the 
incidents which I have narrated, a lesson may be derived 
to the effect, that the man who disgraces a profession will 
soon render his pursuit of it thoroughly unprofitable. 


My official reminiscences are nearly terminated. The 
latter years of my magistracy were not marked by any 
important public events or political excitement. In 1861 
my health became seriously impaired, and a medical com- 
mission of six members reported in favor of my super- 
annuation. My dear friend, Marcus Costello, the attorney- 
general of Gibraltar, having been apprised that I had been 
greatly debilitated by bronchitis and pleurisy, sent me a 
brief note to go out at once, and to say by return of post 
when he might expect me. In compliance with his invi- 
tation, I sailed from Southampton on the 27th of April, 
in the Peninsular and Oriental Company's steamer, 
** Delta," and on the 29th we were crossing the Bay of 
Biscay. My memory reverted to a ballad which I had 
heard sung by Incledon, descriptive of the fearfully tem- 
pestuous state in which that bay is generally found. One 
of his verses is, I believe, as follows :— 

*' Load roar*d the dreadfal thunder, 

The rain a deluge show*rs, 
The clouds were rent asunder 
By lightning's vivid powers. 
The night all drear and dark, 
Closed round our wretched bark, 
As she lay, on that day, 

In the Bay of Biscay, 1" 

I presume to attempt a description of what I observed 
in crossing this estuary ; and I can truly affirm, that what- 
ever may be the defects of my composition^ it does not 
contain the slightest exaggeration — 

804 Twenty Tears^ RecoJUctionf. 

** The lipht-blue sky is o'er us, 
The dark-blue flea beneath, 
The wave scarce moves before us. 

As zephyrs gently breathe. 
The great unfathom'd deep, 
Calm as an infant's sleep, 
Cheers our way, on this day, 

Tbrongh the Bay of Biscay, O ! 

'' The mighty steam-ship cleaving 
The tide, displays her pow'r, 
The wondrous feat achieving 

Of fifteen knots an hour \ 
We speedily shall gain 
A sight of sunny Spain. 
No delay checks our way 

Through the Bsy of Biscay, O I " 

When we did attain eight of the Spanish coast, it 
afforded a yerj marked contrast to the picturesque yiews 
presented by the shores of Ireland and England. There 
were no towering and precipitous clififs or verdant slopes 
to be seen, and almost the only indications of the country 
being inhabited were some watch-towers, from which in 
former days warning signals were exhibited to denote the 
approach of hostile or predatory vessels from Algiers or 
Barbary. Being totally unacquainted with Transatlantic 
and Mediterranean scenery, I can exorcise a very limited 
judgment, but of all the marine views I have seen I consider 
the most beautiful to be the Bay of Dublin, and the 
ugliest to be the far-famed Trafalgar. 

I landed at Gibraltar on the 2nd of May, and was not 
inclined, at my arrival, to form a' very favorable opinion 
of the climate, for I never had previously seen such heavy 
rain as fell on that day, and continued until midnight. 
Mr. Costello's man-servant, hearing me remark the un- 
pleasant state of the weather, said, ^' that it was the last 
rain of the season, and that we should have no more until 
the middle of September." I did not attach much cre- 
dence to his statement, but although my visit lasted for 
four months, I never saw another drop of rain there. He 
was SL native of the place, and s^oka f torn, experience. 

GibraHar. 805 

My friend's residence was not far from the southern 
extremity of Gibraltar, which is also supposed to be the 
southern extremity of Europe, and there were three roads 
leading fh)m it to the main body of the city which is near 
the north front. They were constructed, I suppose, for 
the purpose of affording the most ample means of com- 
munication along the sloping face of the mountain, and 
between the batteries which defiantly bristle all through 
the territory. On the second day of my arrival, I set out 
to walk to the town, and for the sake of the yiew which 
it commanded, I took the most elevated road. There 
■were no dwellings on it, and it went through an exhausted 
quarry, to which the drummers and bugle boys were 
brought for instruction. A squad of them were about to 
commence their practice just as I passed their front, 
whereupon one of them lowered his instrument, and ex- 
claimed to a comrade, " Oh ! Fitzpatrick, there's ould 
Porter from Dublin." On reaching the city I was recog- 
nised by some officers of the 7th Fusiliers. Indeed I am 
disposed to believe that a considerable number of the pri- 
vate soldiers of the garrison had been attested by me in 
the Dublin police-court, for I' received frequent salutes 
whenever I sauntered past the barracks or guard stations. 

My health rapidly improved, and in a few days I 
attained renovated strength. There was no lack of varied 
amusement or social enjoyment, and until the intense heat 
of July and August precluded any movement outside the 
house, between morning and evening, I never passed a 
tedious or tiresome minute. Even in the hot time, espe- 
cially if the wind is westerly, an evening saunter along 
the low road and through the Alameda is very agreeable. 
The people, especially those of the Spanish race, rise 
A,bout four or five o'clock in the morning during the sultry 
months. They go to market and attend to their com- 
mercial arrangements and domestic affairs until nine or 
ten o'clock, then, having breakfasted, they betake them^ 
selves to bed and enjoy a *' Siesta." I adopted the same 
course as far' as the retirement to bed was concerned, and 
ibund • -it extremely pleasant* I went to «IU«<^ ^Vxe^^^ 

306 Twenty Year^ EeooUections. 

immediately after lying down, and seldom awoke until 
tour or five o'clock. Then walking slowly down to the^ 
bay I took a plunge in the salt water, and generally 
returned endowed with an appetite for a hearty dinner 
and a liberal supplement of sherry and ice, after which a 
stroll to the Alameda and a seat under the cool shade of 
an acacia or bella sombra tree, with a military band 
playing on an adjoining bastion, enabled me and my friend 
to pass the evening in good humour with the world and 
with each other. 


GIBRALTAR. — Continued, 

The road by which Gibraltar is approached from Spain 
is, for a considerable distance, completely leveL The con- 
necting isthmus is flanked by the bay and the Mediter- 
ranean, and the latter has been admitted, in the English 
territory, into extensive and deep excavations, which con- 
fine the means of access to a very narrow breadth. The 
face of the fortress on this side displays a stupendous 
and precipitous formation, in which galleries have been 
constructed, from the embrasures of which a fire of heavy 
artillery can be directed, sufficient, as I was informed by 
an officer of engineers, not only to annihilate a hostile 
force, but to destroy the avenue itself, whilst the occu- 
pants of those batteries would be almost completely ex- 
empt from retaliatory casualities. On entering the gate 
on the north front, a battery of about forty guns is passed, 
and it is known by the unpalatable designation of ^^ The 
Devil's Tongue." Close to it, and forming part of the 
city, are two districts, of which one is named Portuguese 
town and the other, Irish town. I endeavoured to ascer- 
tain the origin of the Hibernian term for the latter locality, 
but my inquiries failed to elicit any information, beyond 
the fact of the name having existed for the place previous 
to the captuie of the foxtxe&s by t^he British in 1704. Tho 

Gibraltar. 307 

residence of the Governor was in former times occupied 
by a religious community, and it retains the appellation 
of ** The Convent." A stranger is occasionally surprised 
by hearing that the Governor's lady has given a splendid 
ball, or that his Excellency has entertained a number of 
distinguished persons at the Convent. The gardens com- 
mand a delightful view of the bay, and are remarkable for 
large bushes of myrtles and roses, beautiful fuchsias, and 
geraniums, whilst the finest grapes, figs, pomegranates, 
peaches, apricots, and melons are profusely produced with- 
out requiring artificial heat or the protection of glass. 
The climate is too hot for the growth of apples, pears, 
gooseberries, currants, or raspberries. Oranges are very 
abundant, but are not palatable when gathered from the 
tree, as they are all of the Seville or bitter kind, and are 
used for making marmalade, which is highly valued in 
the sultry months when butter is unattainable. 

Although this interesting and impregnable possession 
is so generally termed the Bock of Gibraltar, there is a 
considerable portion of its surface highly capable of cul- 
tivation. The most prevalent weeds are the nasturtium, 
snapdragon, and convolvulus ; and there is an indigenous 
pea, the blossom of which is exquisitely beautiful in 
appearance, but completely scentless. At the termination 
of the rainy season, a plant springs up in great profusion 
in the ravines and watercourses. It is about a foot in 
height, and the blossoms are very pretty, some of the 
plants bearing white flowers, some red, and others blue. 
The Spaniards call it " Don Pedro," and the English have 
named it " Four o'clock." The petals open about that 
hour in the afternoon, and the blossoms continue ex- 
panded, and diffusing a delightful fragrance until day- 
break, when they invariably close up. The Spanish name 
is derived from a fable, which describes Don Pedro to 
have been a confirmed rake, who slept all the day and 
spent the night in revelling, until an indignant fairy trans- 
formed him into a plant, which retains his habit. 

The east side of Gibraltar is washed by the Mediter- 
ranean, and there are very few guns mounted alon^ tb&^ 

«08 Twenty Years" Recolleciians. 

line, of which four-fifths are totally inaccessible. Th« 
signal station is at tlie summit of the mountain, and from 
the parapet wall, beside the flagstaff, a pebble can be 
dropped into the water with a direct fall of fourteen 
hundred and ninety-four feet. The rock formation on the 
entire territory is exclusively limestone, and I broke off 
some of it at the station, and found it a complete mass of 
concrete shells, whereby it is manifestly proved that the 
mountain must have been originally in a submarine 
position. The strait between it and Barbary is more than 
fourteen miles in breadth, and I was informed that the 

; depth of water midway was three thousand six hundred 

1 feet. 

Snakes and lizards are frequently seen in the Alameda, 
in private enclosures, and in the cemeteries. I was 
assured, however, that none of the former were of a veno- 
mous character, and I caught several with the utmost 
impunity. The lizards are almost all of a bright green 
color, and do not exceed a foot in length. The shape is 
precisely the same as that of an alligator. Monkeys were 
formerly rather numerous, but they have become almost 
extinct. Some of the oldest residents told me that thej 
had never seen one. During my sojourn, the place was 
twice visited by flights of quail from Africa, suddenly 
coming in myriads, and as suddenly departing. 

There is a cemetery just outside the city at a placv 
called the ^^ Ragged Staff." I could not ascertain how 
that name originated, but the cemetery is remarkable for a 
considerable number of tombstones placed over the re* 
mains of persons who died at Gibraltar from the effects 
of wounds received at Trafalgar. Each inscription com- 
mences with ** Sacred to the memory of ,•* and it 

proceeds to enumerate the virtues, personal merits, and 
intrepid deeds of the deceased. I remarked one stone 
placed upon the grave of James Dudley, by the direction 
and at the expense of his shipmates, who valued him 
highly for his kind and generous disposition, and for his 
undaunted courage in the closest and fiercest conflicts, as 
he always evinced great skill and deep penetration. It 

Gibraltar. 309. 

tben states that he died of wounds received in the battle 
off Cape Trafalgar, where he acted as master gunner of 
EEis Majesty's ship, Colossus. I thought on reading this 
LDScription, that "deep penetration'* was a very natural, 
attribute for the gunner of a line-of-battle ship. 

In the beginning of July, 1861, a brig from America, 
bound for Gibraltar, and laden with ice, got ashore in a 
fog near Cape Spartell, on the Barbary coast, and just at 
the entrance of the straits. A Moorish boat brought 
speedy news of this disaster, and the Bedpole steamer 
was ordered to proceed to the assistance of the stranded 
vessel. I requested the naval superintendent, the late 
Admiral Warden, to allow me to go over to the place in 
the " Redpole," to enjoy the novelty of the trip, and see. 
the intended operations. He most kindly complied, and 
the officer in command provided me with a comfortable 
berth, and treated me with great hospitality. We found 
the brig aground, but uninjured ; and when a few tons of 
her cargo were removed she floated, and was towed by 
the steamer to her destination. Several Moors came on 
board, and assisted in lightening the vessel for a trifling 
remuneration ; and they aflbrded very great amusement 
by their gestures and exclamations, their expressions being 
interpreted by a Tangierine lad, who was employed^in the 
steamer. They had never seen ice previously, and were 
inclined to believe it a supernatural or magical produc- 
tion. They were astonished at the coldness and hardness 
of the glassy blocks, and at their rapid dissolution when 
exposed to the rays of a Mauritanian sun ; but they were 
very soon reconciled to the magical material, and seemed 
to appreciate highly the introduction of it to some sherbet 
and lemonade with which they were regaled, steadfastly 
declining any stronger potations. 

During my visit to Gibraltar, I went to see bull-fight* 
at Algesiras, San Roque, and Malaga. They are certainly 
national institutions, which I firmly believe could not be 
abolished or avowedly discouraged in Spain by any govern- 
ment, although their tendency is most undeniably deba- 
sing and brutalising. At the time to Yf\ive\i xiv^ \x«tt"a.>se^^ 

SLO Twenty Ytari Becolkctions, 

refers, the bulls throughout nearly the whole province of 
Andalusia were procured from the domains of a very 
wealthy widow, whose name has escaped my memory. 
She generally attended the exhibitions in which the wild 
ferocity of her animals was considered a most desirable 
quality, and always received an enthusiastic welcome, 
even the most exalted and fairest of her own sex joining 
in the exclamation of '^ Viva la Viuda." (Long live the 

At Algesiras I saw a bull in the Girco that evinced no 
fierceness or combative inclination. The poor brute tried 
to avoid his assailants, and to push back the door through 
which he had entered. His quietude excited the utmost 
indignation, and even the females joined in the cry of 
" Fuego ! ** (Fire.) Accordingly, darts were thrown at 
the animal, in each of which, close to the barbed point, 
there was a charge of gunpowder, connected in the interbr 
of the weapon with a lighted fuse. When some of these 
charges exploded in his flesh, he became completely 
maddened, to the great gratification df the spectators, by 
whom, I have no doubt, the death of even a human 
victim occasionally, would be regarded as an exciting and 
interesting addition to their amusement. 

The attire of the mounted combatants at the bull-fights 
appeared to me to be far more gaudy than graceful 
Their limbs, below the hips, were so thickly padded as to 
look as large as the upper portions of their persons ; and 
in their encounters they did not ride rapidly forward, but 
merely opposed the lance to the onset of the bull. In 
each of eighteen collisions which I witnessed, the horse 
was frightfully gored and destroyed, his rider being saved 
by the matadores throwing their scarlet cloaks over the 
eyes of the bull, and plunging their swords to the hilt in 
his neck, so as to reach the spine. I am now tempted to 
quote a few lines from the first canto of " Childe Harold's 
Pilgrimage," to which I shall subjoin an observation, 
from which it will appear that what I saw differed vastly 
in one respect from the glowing description extracted from 
^yron'a romantic pioducuou — 

Gibraltar. 8J1 

" Hnsh'd is the din of tongues — on gallant steeds. 
With milk-white crest, gold spurs, and light- poised lance, 
Fear cavaliers prepare for ventarons deeds, 
And lowly bending, to the lists advance ; 
. Hich are their scarfs, their chargers featltf prance : 
If in the dangerous game they shine to-day, 
The crowd's loud shout and ladies* lovely glance, 
Best prize of better acts, they bear away. 
And all that kings or chiefs e*er gain their toils repay." 


Of the eigbteen '^ gallant steeds ** which I saw at the 
bull-fights, there was not one to which I would attach the 
value of five pounds. None of them essayed to "prance,'', 
and unquestionably if a horse equal to the best of them 
appeared on the streets of Dublin between the shafts of a 
hackney vehicle, his owner would incur the suspension of 
his license for plying a horse totally unfit for public 

The most picturesque assemblage that I ever beheld 
"was the public market at Gibraltar on Sunday morning. 
Persons of the lower class in the parts of Spain which I 
visited, are, during the week-days, as poorly attired as any 
that can be found in a corresponding position in the 
towns of Ireland, but they are invariably provided with a 
suit specially reserved for Sundays and two or three festi* 
yals. The men have conical hats, round which rows of 
Bhowy ribbons are twined ; and their coslU^ waistcoats, 
and small clothes, of whatever colors they fancy, are pro* 
fusely furnished with globular little buttons of bright 
metal. Sandals, shoes, or buskins display gilt or silvered 
fastenings. Gay neckties, and a brooch or chain, complete 
the holiday costume. I am not competent to describe the 
female attire, but it comprises a head-dress of lace, 
fastened with glittering clasps or buckles ; boots or shoes 
gaily ornamented ; and a gown of rich material, almost 
invariably encircled at the waist by a girdle of metallic 
tissue. Ornaments of gold and jewels, or their semblance, 
appear in abundance. From a thousand to fifteen hun- 
dred such persons may be seen at the market on Sundays, 
between five and six o'clock in the moinia^* 'E^\sa\s!^ ^ 

812 Twenty Tears* liecoUeclions. 

various ranks, wiyes or daughters of persons in th^ garr^ 
son, appear arrayed in their best attire. Boats from 
Tangier and Oran land their produce, to be disposed-of 
by dealers wearing Moorish or Arabic costumes. Sailors 
from the ships of war and artillerymen mingle their blue 
uniforms amongst the scarlet-clad regimental soldiers. .A 
similar scene cannot be exhibited in any part of the 
United Kingdom ; and the diversity of attire is fully 
equalled by the diversity of language which is there to 
be heard. 

Towardfl the end of May, 1861, the assizes for the city 
and territory of Gibraltar were held, and at their conclu' 
sion, the judge, Sir James Cochrane, asked leave <>f 
absence for two months, and I was appointed as his 
locum tenens for that time. I received several official docw 
ments incident to the position, and amongst them was the 
commission of a Justice of the Peace, which was not ai 
temporary authority, and it is still in my possession. I 
am, perhaps, the only person in Ireland whose designa^ 
tiofi of J.P. is unconnected with any locality in the United 
Kingdom. My judicial duties consisted in hearing a fevf 
petitions from insolvents seeking discharges from imprP 
ionment, and granting two or three fiats under an Admi-* 
ralty jurisdiction, in reference to alleged collisions between 
vessels in the bay. Although my authority was of veit 
brief duration, it imparted, during its continuance, rank 
next to that of the Governor. It devolved on me, aiccoin-* 
panied by his Excellency's principal aid-de-camp, to wait 
on the present Empress of Austria, who arrived at 
Gibraltar in the royal yacht, ** Victoria and Albert," on 
her way home from Madeira, where she had been staying 
for some time to renovate her health. I never beheld a 
woman of more prepossessing appearance, and I considered 
her deportment perfectly dignified, but also extremely 
courteous. She accepted the Governor's invitation to a 
dejeuner at the convent, but premised, that as she was 
returning to her family, happily free from any indisposi- 
tion, she was desirous of first visiting the Catholic cathe^ 
drttlf to THtarn thanks to tXa^ AVa\\%\iV^ fot tho mercifdl 

Gibraltar. 313 

manifestation which she had experienced. Accordingly, 
the streets were lined by the troops, and royal salutes 
from the principal batteries greeted her landing, and 
attended her return to the steamer, after the coaling and 
other preparations for continuing the voyage to Trieste had 
been accomplished. 

On one of many occasions that I had the honor and 
pleasure of enjoying the hospitality of the Governor, Sir 
William Coddrington, I sat next to the officerwho com- 
manded a Portuguese frigate, **The Braganza,** that 
anchored for a few days at the New Mole. He was one 
of the Royal family of Portugal, and bore the title of 
Duke of Oporto. His Boyal Highness spoke English- 
tolerably well ; and having heard me mention Dublin as 
my native place, asked me numerous questions respecting 
Ireland and the Irish. I suggested to him that he might 
induce his Government to let him have a cruise to onr 
shores, that some of our bays were very beautiful, and 
that a run from Cork to Killamey would not require much 
time to accomplish, whilst it would assuredly afford him 
great gratification. At the close of our conversation, he 
said, *' Sir, if you should at any time visit Lisbon, if I 
shall be there, I hope that you will call on me : I shall 
be happy to see you, and to endeavour to make the place 
agreeable to you. I expressed my warm thanks for his 
courteous expression, but I have not availed myself of his 
kindness, nor have I any intention to do so. He is now 
King of Portugal ; but at the time when I had. the honor 
of sitting beside him, there were, I believe, three members 
of his family whose respective claims to the throne were 
prior to his. 

On a^ Saturday afternoon, in the beginning of July, 18C1, 
i was passing through the hall at the Governor's residence, 
on my way to the garden, to which I was allowed the 
fullest access. The windows were all open ; and groups 
of persons, including the Governor and some members of 
his family, were sitting beneath the trees, but within 
hearing of any expressions uttered in an ordinary tone in 
the hall. A uaval captain, infuUumfoxui^W'&uyj ^\i\&\:^^ 

314 Twenty Tears* Recollections, 

from the street, and said to the servants in attendance, 
** Let the Governor be immediately informed that Cajh 
tain Jones has brought The Scourge for him," On hearing 
this announcement, I exclaimed, ^' Good heavens ! What 
has he done to deserve that?" This occasioned some 
laughter, in which, I believe, his Excellency participated. 
The Scourge was not unexpected, and its arrival wasvexj 
satisfactory. On the 25th of the previous month, thii 
late Sultan of the Ottoman Empire had commenced liii 
reign; and Sir William Coddrington, having been the 
Commander-in-chief of our army at the conclusion of the 
Crimean war, was very judiciously selected to proceed in 
" The Scourge " steamer to Constantinople, for the purpose 
of presenting Queen Victoria's letter of congratulation on 
his accession, to the Turkish monarch. His Excellency 
h'ft Gibraltar on his mission in two or three hours after 
Captain Jones' arrival, and a Lieutenant-Governor, 
Colonel Stehelin, of the Engineers, was sworn mto office 
by me on the following Wednesday ; but in the interim, 
my position, as acting judge, gave me precedence of all 
other functionaries, civil or military, in the territory. If 
I had been told, before leaving home, that such an eleva- 
tion, even for a few hours, would occur, I should hare 
deemed it incredible. 

About the beginning of August, 1861, two vessels of 
the Russian Imperial navy, a frigate and a corvette, both 
steamers, came into Gibraltar, and anchored for the pur- 
pose of coaling. A considerable portion of their crewi 
were indulged by their commanding officers with leave to 
come ashore ; and certainly they could not have landed at 
any place more likely to excite surprise and gratify curio- 
sity during a ramble of a few hours through it. However, 
they did not evince any anxiety for a close inspection of 
the fortress, or how its natural formation and elaborate 
eonstmctions imparted unrivalled strength. Potency of a 
far different deaoription engrossed their attention. They 

tevems or public-houses near to the 
few entered the premises, whilst 
fioaps under trees or shaded by 

Gibraltar. 316 

tbe walls. In less than an hour they were all drunk, and 
many of them were lying on the thoroughfare in the most 
helpless state of complete intoxication. The scene of their 
unrestrained indulgence was about one hundred yards from 
the residence of my friend, and the windows of his draw- 
ing-room, from which I had a full yiew of them, were all 
open. If I had been only half as far from them, without 
having them in sight, I should never have noticed their 
total lapse from sobriety, for there was no shouting, or 
singing, or quarrelling ; in fact, their intoxication was a 
silent enjoyment, and formed a most thorough contrast to 
that of every liquor-loving group that ever came under 
my observation on any other occasion. They were taken 
down to their boats by parties of their shipmates who were 
on duty, and consequently constrained to keep sober. 

I believe that the population of Gibraltar, in 1861, was 
about 16,000 persons, exclusive of the officials and mili- 
tary. The Christian portion consisted of Roman Catho- 
lics, Protestants, and Presbyterians. There was a consi- 
derable number of Jews, amongst whom several were 
reputed to be extremely wealthy, and there were some 
resident Mahometans. It might be supposed that in such 
% mixed community, religious bickering and polemical 
acerbity would be sometimes manifested, but my own ob- 
servation, and the deliberate statements of all those with 
whom I associated or communicated, enable me to express 
my decided conviction that the place was as free from 
religious animosity or controversial skirmishing as Ireland 
is from toads or snakes. I have seen the funerals of per- 
sons belonging respectively to the various religious deno- 
minations ; and although the covering of the hearse or 
bier, the presence of priestly functionaries in sacerdotal 
sostume, or the direction in which the procession was 
moving, indicated the religion which the deceased had pro- 
fessed, all those who met it on the way to the cemetery, 
stood with uncovered heads as the corpse passed them, 
and offered to those engaged in the mournful ceremony a 
courteous but tacit mark of sympathy and respect. 

Although Gibraltar has been de\i\>eiaX^\^ "c^c^q^^^sm^ 

816 Twenty Years' Recollections, 

and acknowledged to be British territory by the Spanish 
Government, prominent members of political parties hare 
repeatedly advocated a demand for its restoration to Spain, 
and there have been some Englishmen who expressed opi- 
nions of a similar tendency. Alfonso, who has recently^ 
been elevated to regal dignity in Madrid, introduced tbe 
subject in his address on assuming the sovereignty ; and 
we may expect, if his realm becomes completely subject 
to his rule, and ceases to be the theatre of sanguinary in- 
testine encounters, that a claim will be addressed to the 
British government for the cession of a fortress which was 
tremendously strong when it was captured, and has been, - 
by consummate skill, and a profuse expenditure, rendered 
completely impregnable. A prompt and direct refusal 
will, I have no doubt, be the reply to all demands or 
requests for the transfer of this important possession ; but 
I feel perfectly convinced that a British minister migh) 
safely refer the application to the decision of the inhabi- 
tants, the great majority of whom have been bom in tbe 
place, and are, to all intents and purposes, British subjects. 
I do not think it possible for a population to be more 
attached to any government than they are to our rule; 
and if Spanish agents were permitted to canvass them, 
and proceeded to solicit their adhesion, they would find 
their mission replete with danger. In 1861, being one 
day in the shop of a bootmaker, named Finochio, I amused 
myself by pretending to argue with my friend, Dr. Williams, 
in the presence of some native residents, that the territory 
was really Spanish, and that it should be relinquished by 
England. I was greatly surprised, and in some degree 
alarmed, at the effect produced by my observations on the 
hearers, Finochio rushed impetuously to the door of 
his shop, which commanded a view of the signal -station, 
on which the British flag was displayed, and pointing to it 
he exclaimed, ** I would rather endure to be bombarded 
or famished — I would rather see the whole town burned 
to ashes, than have that flag changed for any other. Let 
nie tell you, sir, that if you talk to the people here about 
f^ogland giving them up to S>i^«iTi, ^o\sv^ of them will lose 

Gibraltar. 817 

»mper and insult you." The others approved fully of 
Finochio's observations. However, it is not diflBcult to 
Siscertain the grounds and reasons for such attachment on 
the part of the native population. Their tenements are 
Eilmost entirely held directly from the Crown; and al- 
though the leases are not in general granted for a longer 
period than twenty-one years, the rents are very seldom 
raised, or a renewal refused at the expiration of the term, 
if the tenant has been punctual and improving. Taverns 
and hotels are subjected to considerable licence duties, and 
there is some charge incident to the importation of spirits. 
These are the only taxes which, I believe, are levied in 
the territory. Wine, tea, sugar, coffee, tobacco, wearing 
apparel, and furniture, or materials for the two latter are 
freely admitted. The streets and roads are constructed 
by the military, and cleansed by convict labor. The places 
of worship are exempt from rents to the Crown, and the 
legal institutions are highly appreciated by the people, who 
regard the administration of justice, and especially the 
trial by jury, according to the laws of England, as forming 
a most favorable contrast to the proceedings before the 
Spanish tribunals in the cities and towns of Andalusia. 
I may add, that in 1861 there was a very extensive trade 
in English manufactures and many other productions, 
especially tobacco, carried on by smuggling vessels con- 
veying contraband cargoes to Spain, Portugal, Italy, and 
the Balearic Islands. I believe, that in no part of the 
world are there more devoted, although not disinterested, 
supporters of English authority than were to be found 
navigating their picturesque latteen craft, laden with arti- 
cles derived from the factories of Manchester, Leeds, Not- 
tingham, or Sheffield. 

I have already mentioned several Spanish towns which 
I visited for the purpose of seeing bull-fights. I was also 
at some fairs ; and although there are some points in the 
Spanish character and habitudes which 1 am far from ad- 
miring, I must, in justice to the people who came under 
my observations, state that I never saw one of them in- 
toxicated, although wine and spirits are, m xViaYt <iwsaJ«r|^ 

318 TweiUy Tears' Recollections. 

to be had for less than half what they cost here. Some 
gentlemen at Gibraltar, who had travelled through Spain, 
told me that they believed there was more drunkenness in 
our small possession than in the entire kingdom. I never 
saw a Spanish person of respectable appearance, drink i 
glass of undiluted sherry. The addition of cold water in 
equal quantity seemed indispensable. I have seen male* 
teers setting out on a journey requiring an entire day fw 
its completion, and they carried no animal food. Eadi 
man had a bottle containing a little more than a pint d 
red wine called Priorato, a couple of onions, and a large 
roll of bread made of two-thirds of maize, ground fine, 
and one-third of wheaten flour. They consider onions 
and bread, sliced and eaten together, as very nutritive diet, 
and their strong and healthful appearance justifies their 
opinion. The Priorato wine has a taste somewhat resem- 
bling Port, but I was forbidden by medical authority to 
take it at all, and I was told that the berries of the elder 
tree were plentifully added to the grapes in its manu- 

Spaniards of the humbler class and of either sex, who 
bring edible commodities for sale in Gibraltar, demand i 
much higher price from any person whom they believe to 
have just arrived, and not to have acquired a knowledge 
of the marketable value of the articles, than they ask d 
those whose faces are familiar, or with whom they have 
had previous dealings. Nevertheless, they do not manifest 
any surprise or indignation at being offered, or any laxity 
in accepting, a mere fractional portion of the sum first 
mentioned. A milkman demanded two shillings and two 
pence for about three pints of goat*s milk, which he left 
with me on being offered sixpence. A woman sold me 
muscatel grapes for a shilling, after having named eight 
shillings and eight pence for them. I had an opportunity 
of sending home to Dublin some Murcian melons, and 
proposed to purchase six which had been brought to 
market in a limber kind of basket or net-work neatly 
made of rushes. The vendor did not speak English, and 
I reciprocated his ignoiance of my language by being 

Gihallar. 319 

equally unacquainted with his vernacular. He managed, 
mostly by signs, to apprise me that he required six 
dollars for his fruit, I regarded this demand, amounting 
to twenty-six shillings, as utterly unreasonable, and relin- 
quished all expectation of acquiring a gratifying treat for 
my people, when Dr. Williams happened to approach, and 
on being informed of my disappointment, became an in- 
terpreter and negotiator between the Spaniard and me. 
His interference eventuated in rendering me the owner of 
the fruit and the basket, in which the melons could be 
very conveniently transmitted, at the very reasonable price 
of seven shillings. He told me that he had expostulated 
with the seller on his attempt to obtain from a purchaser 
more than three-fold the fair value of the articles ; but the 
Spaniard considered himself fully justified in the course he 
had adopted previous to my friend's arrival, inasmuch as 
lie believed me to be a complete stranger, ignorant of the 
language, and of the usual prices demanded for fruits, but 
that in any future dealings with me I should not be over- 
charged, although he was quite convinced that, like all 
other English gentlemen, I was very rich and well able to 


The mention of my friend's name reminds me that in 
Gibraltar there is no scarcity of surgeons and physicians 
possessing high professional qualifications. The more 
respectable classes of society avail themselves, in their 
ailments, of the aid which skill and experience can fully 
impart. The lower classes seem insensible or indifferent 
to the character or capability of those to whom they have 
recourse, and there are in the territory some practitioners 
-who profess to repair human hurts or maladies, and also 
the injuries of certain inanimate articles. There is an 
inscription on the front of a small shop, that I venture 
to transcribe, even at the risk of mistaking the exact 
spelling of the Spanish words, and I subjoin an English 
translation : — 

"Barbbro, Savguedor t Saoamuelas, 
sx rbparbn abani008 paragda8 t para80lb8.** 
'' Barber, bleeder, and Tooth-drawer^ 










ToWABM the coaclasioa of mj risxt to Gibraltar, m mar- 
na/e was solemnized between an officer comnuuidiiig t 
friqatie lying off the \ew Mole and a Toane ladj of veij 
prepf/^^e^^lni^ appearance who came from Englaiid, aooom* 
p inied by her mother and some other relatires. The eere* 
monj wa< perf^irmed at the Protestant Chaieh, abont 
eleven o'clock in the forenoon, and an arrangement hud 
been made that the wedding dejt>nner should take place 
on board the vessel, after which the happy couple were 
to ifTftOifd by boat to Algesiras to spend the honeymoon. 
The frigate was directly in Tiew of Mr Costello's resi- 
dence, and with the help of a binocular glass I could see 
perii^^ns on deck as plainly as if I stood amongst them. 
As soon as the bridegroom came ashore to proceed to the 
church, several boats came from the stairs at the Ragged 
Staff, conveying a profuse supply of evergreens and flowers. 
These were quickly taken aloft by the crew who swarmed 
up, and in a few minutes the masts, yards, and rigging 
were festooned with floral decorations, amongst which the 
peculiarly appropriate nuptial ornament, ^'a wreath of 
orange bios^ms,'' was conspicuously displayed on each 
bow and quarter. The other ships were dressed in the 
usual manner, but the frigate appeared pre-eminentlj 
beautiful. The reception of the bride and bridegroom and 
their cortege was most enthusiastic. I was assured by 
several naval officers that the display, which excited the 
unqualified admiration of all who witnessed it, was a 
spontaneous manifestation on the part of the crew of 
their respect and affection for their captain. I regret that 
I do not recollect his name, but the feeling evinced towards 
him was not the only instance that came under my obser- 
vation indicative of great attachment on the part ci 
British sailors for their commanders. 

Gibraltar. 321 

To the respectable residents of Gibraltar, whether 
official or commercial, the place affords many advantages. 
* — i The comforts attainable in the cities of the United 
CKr Sangdom can be there procured on terms in many respects 
^i- more moderate, and in none, as far as I could learn, seri- 
ously greater, whilst many articles of domestic requirement, 
are vastly cheaper, owing to their importation not being 
K^ subjected to Customs' duties. The prices of shoes, boots, 
V and hats appeared to me to be lower than those I should 
" i haye to pay in Dublin for a similar description and qualitv 
-i of goods. Woollen, linen, and cotton fabrics are some- 
^ what dearer than here, and tables, chairs, and bedsteads, 
. - unless made of very old and well-seasoned wood, shrink 
r and shrivel in the sultry time, and require repairs involv- 
ing some outlay. The expenses incident to soft goods and 
furniture are not much complained of, and do not appear 
to be considered serious inconveniences. 

Respectable residents or visitors can have, at a cost of 
twenty shillings yearly, access to a library, from which 
useful information and amusement may be extensively 
derived. The building is of elegant structure, of extensive 
dimensions, and its furniture unites beauty of appearance 
with utility and comfort. It is supplied with the princi- 
pal newspapers and periodical publications of the civilized 
world, and its shelves contain about twenty thousand 
volumes, most conveniently arranged, and comprising the 
choicest specimens of ancient and modern literature. No 
person should visit Gibraltar, even during the time re- 
quired for coaling a steamer, without taking a glance or 
two at the library and from its windows, for some of them 
command a splendid view of the bay and of a considerable 
portion of the fortress, whilst many others are immediately 
over parterres of the choicest and most luxuriant floral 

Having enumerated almost every agreeable or advanta- 
geous circumstance that I can recollect respecting the 
time I spent in Gibraltar, I shall proceed to notice the 
only alloys to the varied pleasures which I experienced 
there. From the middle of June to the beginning of 

822 Twenty Year^ BeeoUections. 

September the heat is extremely oppressiye, and when the 
wind is easterly, as it frequently was during my sojourn, 
its effect is extremely debilitating to the body and de- 
pressing to the mind. During the sultry months no rain 
ever fails, and, nevertheless, the wind coming from the 
Levant is surcharged with moisture. Clothes hung out 
to dry under a scorching sun continue as damp as when 
first exposed, or perhaps become more so. Fish or flesh 
meat killed in the morning will not be eatable in seven or 
eight hours. Wine bottled, marmalade or jams made^ 
turn acid very soon. The slightest exertion becomes a 
labour, and persons are less censurable for inattention to 
the comforts of others as they lapse into indifference to 
their own requirements. A long continuance of an east 
wind would probably prove disastrously unhealthy, but it 
seldom lasts long, and generally, after a couple of days or 
a few hours, it is succeeded by a westerly breeze from the 
broad Atlantic, cool, dry, and invigorating. 

This impregnable fortress, which may defy all human 
efforts for its forcible reduction, is not proof against the 
invasion of countless small but most sanguinary creatures 
that, if they could audibly express their universal craving, 
would make an unvaried and continuous demand of blood. 
The mosquitoes appear early in June, and are a most per- 
sistent nuisance during the sultry months. It is no sl^ht 
advantage to Great Britain and Ireland to be free from 
their annoyance. I suffered greatly from their envenomed 
bites, and although sex or age appears to be utterly disre- 
garded in their insatiate and incessant attacks, they are 
reputed to accord a preference to the blood of a stranger. 
The slightest aperture in the curtains of my bed resulted 
in numerous punctures being made in the skin of my face 
and hands. My friend Costello slept in an uncurtained 
bed, and was not attacked by the mosquitoes. He told 
me that, after he had resided in Gibraltar for a couple of 
years, they ceased to annoy him. Dr. Williams described 
them as *^ the most affectionate little creatures in the 
world, for if you killed one, some hundreds would come 
io bis funeral." 

Gibraltar. 323 

During the months of May and June in 1861, I heard 
more cannon shots than ever reached my ears in the rest 
of my existence. The artillery were practising daijy for 
several hours at floating targets in the bay, and the noise 
was certainly far from agreeable to me. In the expres- 
sion of a wish for more quietude, I met no sympathy from 
those who had resided in Gibraltar for a year or two, 
and who had become accustomed to the firing, and 
perhaps, if I spent a few months more in the fortress my 
nerves would have become more obtuse. The convict 
depot, outside the line wail, was very near to the battery 
principally used for practice, and I have seen the premises 
occupied by the superintendent completely clouded with 
smoke, whilst his walls reverberated the repeated dis- 
charges of heavy cannon. He directed my attention to 
the domestic fowl, of which he had a considerable number, 
and to the poultry of various kinds having become quite 
accustomed and apparently reconciled to the appalling 
sounds, and to the fire and smoke copiously emitted in 
their proximity. 

I was told, in casual conversations with artillery officers, 
that one-third of the ammunition contained in the maga- 
zines of Gibraltar was expended yearly, and that the 
deficiency was supplied by an equal quantity from home. 
I was informed that gunpowder becomes deteriorated if 
kept beyond three years, and that the most advantageous 
use of the old stock was to expend it in artillery practice. 
Some of the floating targets were stated to be eight 
hundred yards, and others six hundred, from the battery. 
I saw shells used very frequently, and was informed that 
the practice was not efficient or satisfactory if at least one- 
third of the shells did not explode directly over the 
target. The bay is occasionally visited by large shoals of 
porpoises, and in calm weather they frolic in great 
numbers on the surface of the water. On a day in June, 
1861, they were extremely abundant, and no where more 
so than close to the floating targets. Every shell dis- 
charged, killed or disabled some of them without frighten- 
ing the others or dissolving their '* aggregate meeting.** 

324 Twenty Years* RecoUection$, 

borne tons of porpoises yrere collected after the firing 
eeased, and subjected, I believe, to some process for the 
extraction of oil. I was a spectator, for about two hours, 
of the scene I have endeavoured to describe, and it im- 
pressed me with an awful appreciation of our artillery as 
applicable to actual warfare. 


Early in the month of September I mentioned, in a 
conversation with the naval superintendent, my intention 
to leave Gibraltar for £ngland by the first homeward- 
bound steamer of the Peninsular and Oriental Company 
that arrived. He observed that the "St. Jean d'Acre,** 
the fiagrship of Admiral Elliot, was to sail for Plymouth 
on the dth or 9th, and that if I chose to go in her he 
would ask the Admiral to give me a passage. To this 
most friendly proposal I thankfully acceded, and received, 
through Captain Warden, an invitation from the Admiral, 
and an intimation that a cot should be slung up for me in 
];iis saloon. At the appointed time, I went on board, and 
met with a most gratifying reception from the Admiral 
iind the other officers. I was apprised that the ship was 
to call at Tangier, and also at Cadiz, which might cause 
a delay of some hours at each place. We went very 
quickly to Tangier, where a communication was received 
for the British ambassador at Madrid, to be transmitted 
to him from Cadiz. On arriving off the latter place, the 
Admiral landed and came back in about an hour to have 
his personal luggage packed up, to put his sailing captain 
in full command of the vessel, and then to proceed himself 
to Madrid as speedily as possible, in accordance with a 
telegraphic message from our ambassador. All requisite 
arrangements were very quickly completed ; but before he 
left the ship he addressed the officers and crew, expressing 
briefly but strongly his regret at parting from those who 
had evinced, whilst under his command, the greatest effi- 
ciency in the discharge of their duties, accompanied by 
numerous manifestations of respect and attachment, of 

Charity ; Real Charity* 825 


wbich he felt extremely proud, and should never be for-* 
getful. As soon as his barge pulled off, the crew, of their 
own accord, rapidly manned the yards, and cheered him 
most enthusiastically until he entered the port and was 
no longer in sight. It was a most affectionate farewell^ 
and must have been thoroughly disinterested, for the ship 
was going home to be paid off, and, consequently, her 
officers and crew would be dispersed amongst the general 
body of the naval service. Immediately after we left 
Cadiz, the midshipmen came into the saloon to receive 
lessons from the naval instructor ; and as each of them 
entered he saluted me with a semblance of the utmost 
respect and humility, as ** Admiral Porter.*' When I 
disclaimed the rank and authority ascribed to me by the 
middies^ one of them replied, that when the admiral had 
gone away, leaving me in full possession of his cabin^ they 
had agreed to make me an admiral, at all events until we 
reached Plymouth ; and he begged leave to suggest that 
the first exercise of my authority ought to be an order to 
the instructor to give them a holiday or two. I laughed 
heartily at the young scamp's suggestion, and the lessons 
commenced. The instructor reprimanded one of his pupils 
for not having previously studied some pages assigned to 
him to learn, saying, **You will never attain rank in 
the navy if you continue so ignorant of Navigation*" The 
middy replied, pointing to me, *' The admiral who is sit* 
ting there is of very high rank, and I could safely swear 
that I know as much about navigation as he does/' 

charity; real charitt. 

A woman and two children had been sent on board the 
^'St. Jean d'Acre" at Gibraltar to be taken to England* 
Her name was Crompton, and she was the widow of a 
carpenter who had been accidentally killed at the New 
Mole two or three months previous to our departure. Of 
the children, both boys, one was still unweaned, and the 
poor mother and her offspring appeared to be miserably 
destitute. Their scanty clothing was s(\via^id. ^tw^\\^^|^^s 


826 Twenty Year£ Recollections, 


and her health had been seriously impaired* She said that 
her native place was in Durham, and that on arriving at 
Plymouth she should apply to be transmitted home by the 
parochial authorities. We were not forty-eight hours at 
sea before she and her infants were comfortably and neatly 
clad, the outer garments being made of blue serge, and 
the others of checkered stuff. She and her elder boj 
Were furnished with hats and boots, fitting perfectly, the 
uppers of the latter being made of canvas darkly varnished. 
I was greatly surprised at the skill displayed in attiring 
the poor creatures, for the needlework was faultless. The 
younger child was made the favorite plaything of the crew, 
who seemed delighted to pet and nurse him. When our 
voyage was completed, a subscription amongst the officers, 
Seamen, and marines provided her with twenty-two pounds, 
to which I added half a sovereign. The boatswain was 
the principal collector for the poor widow,^ whom he de- 
scribed in nautical phraseology, to be ''at dead low 


The progress of the *' St. Jean d'Acre" did not appear 
to me to be very speedy after our departure from Cadiz until 
we arrived off Cape St. Vincent. The vessel was propelled 
solely by the steam-screw. She was large and heavy, and 
the weather was quite calm, so that sails were useless. I 
did not regret the delay, for I could not be in more agree- 
able society, and I never experienced any tendency what- 
ever to sea-sickness. However, just as we sighted St. 
Vincent, a strong and very favorable breeze sprung up, 
and the sails were ordered to be set. Whilst all hands 
were engaged aloft, I was sitting on the quarter-deck, en- 
joying the novelty of the scene before me, and admiring 
the celerity with which the work was accomplished. The 
then were beginning to descend, when a poor fellow named 
Parkes dropped from a great height. I think he fell from 
what is termed the mizen-topsail-yard, and he came down 
very close to me. I iustwitiV^ \.wiVV\Tii\wA«t \»W Airmpits 

The Bay of Biscay Again. 327 

and drew him lengthways on his back. He mattered, 
**Too much tobacco," and died instantly. It appeared 
that he had been cautioned by the medical officers against 
the excessive chewing of tobacco, but his neglect of the 
warning, and a persistent indulgence in the unwholesome 
mastication, produced a very fatal fall. In the evening of 
the following day, his body was committed to the deep. 
It was sewn in his hammock, in which a large cannon 
ball was also enclosed. The band played some mournful 
music whilst the corpse was conveyed to a grating, on 
which it was laid, covered with the British flag. The 
officers were in full uniform, smd all the men not actually 
engaged in navigating the ship came on deck. The chap- 
lain read the Burial Service of the Church of England, 
substituting " the deep'* for *' the ground," and the grating 
, and flag were then released from their horizontal position, 
and the body, slipping from between them, sank into the 
ocean. The ceremony was extremely solemn and respectful; 
but as soon as it concluded, the band went down between 
decks and commenced playing very lively tunes, and the 
crew betook themselves to dancing and other pastime^ in- 
cident to an hour of merry " sky-larking." I believe that 
in the navy and army is is deemed desirable to discourage 
the continuance, after discharging the last duties to the 
deceased sailor or soldier, of gloomy thoughts or dismal 


When we arrived in the Bay of Biscay, it was in a state 
very unlike that which I endeavoured to describe in refer- 
ence to my passage through it on my voyage to Gibraltar. 
It then fully realised the Byronic line — 

'' And ocean slumber'd like an nn weaned child ;** 

but when I viewed it from the deck of the homeward- 
bound war-steamer, its surface was free from foam, and 
perfectly glassy, but the smooth, unbroken water exhibited 

328 Twenty Tears* Recollections, 

stupendous undulations. We had a steady breeze on our 
quarter, filling every sail, and directing the roll of the sea 
completely with us, and our decks were quite dry. From 
the summit of a mountain wave, we slided noiselessly 
down, and were immediately raised again to a great bat 
transient elevation. In my former passage across the bay, 
T was charmed by its unusual placidity, and on my return 
I was struck with admiration of its grand appearance, and 
highly gratified by the safe and very quick run that we 

We anchored in Plymouth harbour late in the evening 
of the 16th of September, and I landed on the following 
morning, and remained at a hotel for two days, awaiting 
the arrival of the steamer on her way from London to 
Dublin. During my short stay, I was able to go through 
Plymouth, Devonport, and their environs, which, whilst 
they display natural beauties of no ordinary character, 
afford to a stranger, in their public establishments, manj 
objects which cannot fail to excite admiration. Even- 
tually, I reached Dublin on the 21st, and received the 
affectionate congratulations of my family on my return to 
them in perfect health. On the day after my arrival, my 
youngest child designated me '^ the sweetest papa in the 
world." The appellation was undoubtedly suggested by 
the circumstance, that I had brought home 100 lbs. of 
orange marmalade, 70 lbs. of preserved nectarines, 70 lbs. 
of apricot jam, and six large Murcian melons. The excel- 
lence of my sweets was fully proved by the rapidity of 
their consumption. I fetched from Gibraltar a snake and 
a green lizard, which I sent to the Zoological Gardens; 
but I believe they did not long survive their transportaticm 
from the South of Spain to our cold and humid climate. 


After my return from Gibraltar, I found the tenor of 
my life in Dublin forming the greatest contrast to the 
twenty years during whjch I had been engaged in magis- 
tr;ria] duties of a multifarious nature, extending from the 


J At Home — Leisure no Pleasure. 829 

!• cognizance of lapses from sobriety or neglect of sweeping 
t a footway, to authorising a searcn for concealed pikes or 
r lirearms, or taking informations and issuing warrants for 
j treason-felony. 1 regarded my release from any further 
attendance at the place in Exchange-court, dignified by 
the appellation of the Head-Office, as a most agreeable and 
healthful change ; but I often regretted the cessation of 
my functions at the branch-court in Kingstown, where I 
enjoyed the ventilation of a pure atmosphere through 
cleanly and elevated premises, whilst the bench which I 
occupied commanded a view of almost the entire Bay of 
Dublin. I filso derived from my official position a free 
passage, by first-class carriage, on the Dublin and Kings- 
town Railway, and occasionally received passes on the 
Great Southern and Western Line, enabling me to visit 
Cork or Killamey, All these advantages terminated on 
my retirement. Persons sometimes came to tny house, 
supposing that I still had sufficient authority to take 
declarations or attest signatures ; and when informed that 
my functions had ceased, expressed their disappointment 
at finding that I was " no longer of any use," My next- 
door neighbour was a Rev. Dr. Browne ; and a gentleman 
who had some business with him, but did not exactly 
know his residence, pointed out my door to a cabman, 
and desired him to "try there." Cabby replied, "No, 
sir, that is where Porter, the decayed magistrate^ lives.'* I 
do not believe, however, that in the use of such an expres- 
sion any wilful disrespect was intended. I have often heard 
owners and drivers of public vehicles declare that they re- 
gretted my retirement. 

The Italians have a very current phrase,* which attaches 
delight to the total absence of employment. I never could 
appreciate idleness as pleasurable ; and I believe that nume- 
rous instances of mental aberration have originated in the 
want of occupation. I am disposed to insert in these pages n 
few pi eductions of my first year of unrelished leisure. If 
their perusal is pleasing to a reader, they require no 

• Dolce far niente. 


330 TujerUy Tearf^ Recollections. 

apology ; and if they are considered unworthy of atten- 
tion, they may serve as a warning to others against heing 
induced to waste their time in similar attempts. 


A gentleman of literary tendencies, and for whom I had 
a great personal regard, mentioned to a small party of 
friends his intention to publish a semi-monthly periodical 
in Dublin, under the title of "The Irish Review," I 
stated that whilst wishing the utmost success to his under- 
taking, my hopes were extremely slender, and adduced 
what I considered cogent reasons for the opinion expressed. 
None of the others coincided with me, and one of them 
jocularly remarked that a penance should be imposed od 
me by requiring me to write the preface. With this pro- 
position the others fully agreed, and although I steadfastly 
declined to comply with their requisition, I expressed a 
willingness to attempt a contribution of a prefatory nature, 
the topics and composition being completely left to my own 
discretion, ov. perhaps I should say, indiscretion. The pro- 
duction was sent and published, and although the periodi- 
cal was <iot ultimately successful, a better result naay pos- 
sibly attend the next attempt to establish an enlighteaed 
and impartial organ of literary criticism in the Irish uietro- 
polis. My contribution was headed — 


When Albion, proud Albion, heard threats of inrasioD, 
Her spirit and energy met the occasion ; 
She caU'd on her sons, and thej readily back'd her. 
And perhaps for that reason, no foes have attack'd her. 

Of Ireland, it seemS; there were donbtings and fears ; 
From us they declined to demand rolnnteers ; 
They thought that if bay'nets and muskets we got. 
We 'd exchange with each other a thrust or a shot. 

They thought Tipperary could ne'er meet Tyrone, 
And part in whole skin without any sore bone, 
t lads from o\d GaV^a^ ot V^owvViVivvv 'Lralee; 
Derry's appreuutas im^x. ^\«»«k;gjt^^. 

Lines in an Album. . 831 

We've no volunteers, and we'll not have a fight, 
Oar colors are peaceful, they're plain black and white; 
But without volunteers in green, scarlet, or blue. 
We *re determined on having An Irish Rbvikw. 

A review— where a mere moral force we demand, 
A review — at which Intellect takes the command, 
A review— where each Science delights to combine, 
A review — where Wit*s facings appear in the line. 

A review— where a press procures willing recruits, 
A review — where at Folly the satirist shoots ; 
At poor Private Follj no aim is directed, 
But General Folly 's the mark that *8 selected. 

To General Goodhumor the duty 's assigned 
Of keeping the ground, and the public shall find 
He '11 drive away Rancor and Prejudice, too, 
Till Gen*ral Applause greets Thb Ikish Rbvibw. 


I wrote at the request of my beloved and truly lamented 
ion, Austin Duggan Porter, the following lines in his 
llbum: — 

Mt youthful years have passM away. 

My step hath lost its lightness. 
And scanty locks, once brown, then gray, 

Now show unvaried whiteness. 
My failing eyes can see but few 

Of early friends remaining, 
Tet have I many reasons true 

To keep me from complaining. 

To be a blessing to mine age, 

I see mine offspring striving ; 
And even in this little page 

My boyhood seems reviving. 
I feel that they who bear my name 

My early tastes inherit, 
And their pursuits are just the same 

As pleased my youthful spirit. 

332 Twenty Years^ Recollections. 



Several friends have suggested that, even at the tisl of 
being considered discursive or irregular in the arrange* 
ment of my Gleanings and Reminiscences, I shotild not 
conclude without narrating a few of the incidents which 
my intimacy with the late Patrick Brophy, of Dawson 
Street, the State Dentist, enabled me to witness or to hear 
described by him. 

He had commenced industrial avocations as an appren* 
tice to a jeweller in Skinner Row, and became singularly 
skilful in the execution of articles in the precious metals, 
especially in the making of necklaces or setting of gems. 
He subsequently obtained employment from a German 
dentist who lived in Golden Lane; and from him he 
acquired a practical knowledge of the operative means 
necessary for the relief of personal suffering by stuffing or 
extractmg teeth. The German returned to his native 
country in J 815, and Brophy immediately succeeded to 
his Dublin business. When I became acquainted with 
him, he was livini? in Dawson Street, and reputed to be 
in the most extensive practice of a profession for which 
he had not received any special preliminary instruction. 
He was extremely convivial, but far more willing to give 
than to receive invitations ; and although his table was 
most profusely supplied with the choicest wines and spirits, 
I never perceived in him the slightest indication of intem- 
perance. Amongst his intimates the most intimate was a 
gentleman who resided in the town of Galway, and whose 
person was so very bulky as to obtain for him the soubriquet 
of "The Great Western.'* He required no invitations to 
Brophy's table, for whenever he visited Dublin, he became 
a daily dinner guest during his stay ; and certainly his 
host did not hesitate to make him the subject of tricks or 
bantering. At one time, Brophy had just returned from 
a Parisian trip, and brougVit. Viomvi \.>«o oy three shawl or 

A Dublin Dentist. 333 

scarf-pins made of polished steel, and having large mother- 
of-pearl heads. The " Great Western'* was in town, and 
was in his usual place at dinner time, on a day when I 
happened to be a truest. Pat had a dark scarf on his 
neck, and it was fastened with one of the Parisian pins 
which I afterwards heard had cost about tenpence. His 
bulky friend had a finger ring, on which there was one 
diamond, and soon after dinner, he took it off, and handed 
it to Brophy, saying — 

"Pat, you are considered a very competent judge of 
diamonds ; what would you value that ring at ?*' 

Brophy examined the article, and replied, '* I think it is 
worth about thirty pounds." 

" Well," said the other, " I bought it this morning at 
West's in Capel Street, for thirty guineas." 

*' I do not think you should be dissatisfied with your 
bargain. It is a nice, clear stone, and has been very 
neatly set," was the observation of our host ; but the pro- 
prietor of the ring very soon observed that Pat was sport- 
ing a beautiful pearl pin, and asked him where he had pro- 
cured it. 

*' This pin," said Brophy, taking it out of his scarf, and 
holding it up to the view of his interrogator, " should be 
in some national museum or institution where the relics 
of departed heroism and the memorials of glorious achieve- 
ments would excite the curiosity and admiration of future 
generations. I have neither the time nor the ability ne- 
cessary to the description of its formation or value. I 
almost wish that 1 never became its possessor." 

The " Great Western" took the pin, and expressed his 
admiration at the neatness of its formation, and the clear- 
ness and smoothness of the beautiful pearl, of which he 
implored his dear friend Pat to disclose the entire history. 
Pat consented, and proceeded as follows : — 

** I was for several years on terms of the closest inti- 
macy with the late Dr. Auchmuty, who had a disj)ensary 
at Rathfarnham. In his latter years his teeth had com- 
pletely decayed, and I made him a set, with which he was 
highly pleased, and for which I dedmed \.o ^^^^'^X. <3?l "«o;?j 

334 Twenty Years^ RecoUectiana. 

lemuneration. I kept them in order by occasional repurs 
and cleaning, and frequently yisited the old doctor, for 
whom I bad the highest esteem, and whose conversatioa 
was extremely interesting, for he had been a naval surgeon, 
and served on board the " Victory" at the battle of Tra- 
falgar. At length he found his health declining very 
rapidly, and felt that his end was approaching ; and be 
said to me, a short time before his death, that he wished 
to leave me a token of his gratitude ■ for my attentions, 
and begged me to accept this pin, which he assured me 
was formed from a nail drawn from the timbers of the 
* Victory,' steeled and highly polished, and then mounted 
with the pearl, which he had taken from Nelson^s eye. 
Such is the simple history of this extraordinary relia*' 

''Oh! what a treasure you obt£dned from your old 
friend r* exclaimed the "Gretft Western," ''exquisitely 
beautiful in appearance, and also surpassingly interesting 
in reference to its materials and origin." 

" Its intrinsic value," said Brophy, " is not half, or per^ 
haps a quarter, of what your ring cost," 

" I would give two such rings for that pin," was the 

" Suppose I let you have it for one." 

" I would close the bargain at once." 

"Then close it," said Pat, handing the pin to the 
" Great Western," from whom he received in return the 
thirty-guinea ring. 

Within forty-eight hours all the very numerous {riends 
and acquaintances of the dentist became fully informed 
respecting the substitution of the Parisian shawl-pin for 
the pearl off Nelson's eye. The former owner of the ring 
became the object of cajolery and mock condolence where- 
soever he appeared, and no one quizzed or bantered him 
more than his friend Pat, who advised him to get up a 
raffle for the pin, and offered to take three tickets, pro- 
vided each chance of obtaining the Trafalgar relic did not 
exceed fourpenCe. He retained the ring ; but, certainlyy 
the " Great Western" could console himself in the enjoy- 
ment of very frequent te^aaVa, -vVAaVi ha ai^^^eared dally 
to appreciate. 

A Dvhlin Dentist, 335 

When Prince Napoleon, some years since, went round 
Great Britain and Ireland in the Imperial yacht, ^'La 
Heine Hortense," he was detained at Galway by the 
weather becoming extremely boisterous. Having landed 
and arranged to remain fpr a few days at the railway 
hotel, he was waited on by the " Great Western,"^ who 
then happened to be the High Sheriff, and who, accom- 
panied by some of the principal gentry, welcomed the 
Prince, and expressed an anxiety to give him a cordial 
reception and to render his sojourn agreeable. The sheriflf 
addressed him in French, but was immediately requested 
to speak English, with which language the Prince stated 
that he was perfectly acquainted. In a short time after, 
I was dining at Brophy's, and the Galway functionary 
commenced a narration of the interview, but was imme- 
diately interrupted by Pat, who told him that we knew all 
about the affair already. 

"How can you know anything about it?" said the 
sheriff; " there was nothing published beyond the fact of 
our having called to pay our respects." 

" Oh 1" replied Pat, " one of your companions was here 
very soon after, and gave me the particulars fully, and I 
mentioned them to a great many of my friends. He said 
that you told those who were going with you that you 
would address Napoleon in French, and when you and the 
others were admitted, you began to speak, but were imme- 
diately stopped by the Prince, who said, *Mr. Sheriff, 
you will greatly oblige me by speaking English, for I 
assure you and the other Galway gentlemen that I do not 
understand the Irish language.'" 

The laughter excited by Brophy's imaginative statement 
that the sheriff's French had been mistaken for Irish was 
renewed and increased by the earnest declaration of the 
latter that the Prince had not uttered a word about the 
Irish language, nor imputed any imperfection to his 
French. By his energetic denials of the fiction he ren- 
dered it extremely amusing. 

Along with great hospitality, Brophy afforded his guests 
fre9[uent and varied amusements. He had a ^i^w.^vi^^'^^^Nsb 

836 Tioenty Years* Recollections* 

number of costumes, which euabled him to impart a gro- 
tesque and motley appearance to the occupants of his 
dinner-table, or to produce a taJhUau vivant in his drawing- 
room. There was a young barrister whose stature ex- 
ceeded six feet, and he was generally wigged, robed, and 
placed on an elevated seat, to be styled ** The Lord High 
Chancellor." I was usually equipped to personate a Lord 
Mayor ; but whenever his favorite tableau of the death of 
Nelson was produced, I was in the garb of a sailor, and 
had to catch the falling hero as soon as one who sang, 
with a splendid voice and great musical taste, the recita- 
tive and air descriptive of the casualty, came to the lines 

** At length the fatal wound, 
Which spread dismay around, 
The hero's breast received. " 

The vocalist was not in view ; he was in a side wing, 
where he was accompanied by pianoforte music, and the 
shot was simulated by a blow on a drum. Broph/s 
Nelson was a perfect make-up, He wore an admiral's 
uniform, presenting an armless sleeve and various decora- 
tions, and the green shade over the pearl on the sightless 
eye was not forgotten, I recollect one representation, 
when he fell more against my shoulder than across my 
arm and knee, but he immediately stood up and exclaimed, 

" D n it, that wont do ; I must die again." 

He was very fond of music, and played the violin fre- 
quently, but confined his performances to jigs, reels, and 
lively Irish tunes. I called one evening, when I was told 
that he was not at home, but as I was leaving, the servant 
followed me, and I was informed that he wished me to go 
down to the lower room of " the return," where he had 
*' a couple of fiddlers." When I entered the apartment, 
he said that he was glad I came, as I had two legs, and 
could increase the number amongst them to half-ardozen. 
Each of his companions was minus a leg, but their hands 
were in perfect ord^r, an^ \)cv^vt xcisjk&vi ^«>a ^xlremely 

A Dublin Dentist. 837 

The late Lord Ros&more was very intimate with Brophy, 
Who was certainly not singular in admiring the many 
amiable and agreeable qualities invariably evinced by his 
noble friend. On one occasion Pat had engaged a first- 
rate player on the Irish pipes named ConoUoy or Coneely, 
to enliven upwards of a dozen guests by his very delec- 
table music. He was totally blind^ and was placed on a 
chair in a comer of the parlour, where he played whilst 
we were dining, hut he had been previously supplied with 
a plentiful repast. In the course of the evening, Brophy 
had a small table placed before the piper, and said that 
he had afforded us very great pleasure, but he should take 
a little rest, unyoke the pipes, and have a tumbler of 
' punch, which was made by Brophy and put just at his 
hand. Almost immediately after this arrangement had 
been effected. Captain Toosey Williams urged Lord Soss- 
more to take the pipes and favor us with a tune or two. 
We all joined in the request to " his lordship," and he 
acceded to our wishes, and played several pieces of exqui- 
sitely sweet music, interspersed with most extraordinary 
imitations. In one, which was named ** The Hare in the 
Com," he produced sounds very much resembling the cry 
of harriers, and other tones like the notes of a hunting 
horn, terminating with two or three simulated squeaks, 
supposed to indicate the capture of the hare. He then 
proceeded to play the beautiful Scotch air of " Ye banks 
and braes o' bonnie Doon," to which we were listening 
with great delight, when the blind piper rose from his 
seat, and exclaimed with fuiious indignation — 

"I did not expect such treatment from any people 
calling themselves gentlemen. It was a most scandalous 
shame to bring me, a poor dark man, here to be hum-* 
bugged as you are trying to do, calling on my lord to yoke 
my pipes and play for ye. He is as much " a lord " as I 
am myself; the d— -^^ — ^1 a lord ever played as he does, 
he's nothing but a rale piper. It is not honest or decent 
to try and deceive me, but you can't do it." 

Brophy succeeded in pacifying the enraged musician by 
admitting that the performer was a real pi^^t, «.w<i >«i^ 

338 Twenty Yeartl Recolkctiona. 

had two or three tunes more. Conollj's indignation pro- 
duced very great merriment amongst us, and no one 
enjoyed it more than the noble object of his censure. 

There was a citizen of high commercial position, who 
was, I believe, justly reputed to be very wealthy. Ha 
was a widower, and had become habituated to take a very 
copious allowance of grog immediately before retiring to 
rest. He had a son whose society Brophy highly relished, 
for he had been an amateur performer in every scene of 
warfare to which he could obtain access. He had served 
in Portugal under the standard of Donna Maria, and subse- 
quently joined the foreign legion embodied to contend 
against the claims of Don Carlos to the crown of Spain. 
The contests in which he had participated, and the vicissi- 
tudes he had undergone, enabled him to relate many in- 
teresting occurrences. He was a very agreeable companion, 
and was always welcome in Dawson Street. Brophy had 
made a set of teeth for the old gentleman, and when 
doing some occasional repairs, was informed of the fact, 
that every night the teeth were placed in a vessel of cold 
water, where they remained until their own owner restored 
them to his jaws in the morning. One evening the young 
man was expressing great dissatisfaction at the dull, tame, 
and insipid life he was leading, without having any incen- 
tive or opportunity to exhibit energy or attempt enter- 
prise ; and he added, that although he was well lodged, 
clothed, and dieted, he was personally penniless, for his 
father never allowed him any pocket-money. 

" Fll get you a little cash," said Brophy. *' Slip into 
his bedchamber, and bring me his teeth ; he puts them in 
a water-basin before he goes to bed.'' In a night or two 
the suggestion was adopted, and Brophy immediately 
made some slight alteration to prevent them exactly fitting 
their owner, who very soon arrived in a most disconsolate 
state, and was scarcely able to express articulately the in- 
convenience and annoyance to which he was subjected. 
He admitted that he had not been quite sober when he 
went to bed, but felt certain that he had left the teeth in 
the bsiaia as usual. 


A Dublin Dentist. 339 

Brophy sympathised with the toothless patient, and told 
him that he would lose no time in remedying the disaster. 
He measured the mouth, and then said that there was a 
set nearly ready for a person who had bespoken them, 
which, with a little alteration, might lit the present occa- 
sion. The teeth were tried, they were a little too tight in 
one place, and not close enough in another ; but these 
faults were speedily redressed, and the old gentleman was 
enabled to express distinctly his perfect satisfaction, add- 

*' It is all right, Pat. There could not be a better den- 
tist found in the world ; and only that they did not fit 
when you tried them at first, I would most swear that my 
own teeth were back again in my head" 

Brophy received twenty pounds, which were imme- 
diately transferred to the young fellow, who subsequently 
went to Italy to fight for the Pope, but never returned. 

Patrick Brophy was a widower when my acquaintance 
with him commenced. At his marriage he had received 
from the bride's father one thousand pounds in cash, and 
a bond for a thousand pounds, the interest on which was 
to be paid half-yearly, and the principal to be liquidated 
at the death of the obligor. A sudden and very severe in- 
disposition proved fatal to the bride in nine days after her 
wedding, and in the evening after her interment her hus- 
band returned the cash and bond to her parent. Although 
such conduct was certainly disinterested, and might by 
many be deemed even generous, he never relished any 
allusion or reference to it. 

I believe that about the commencement of his dentistry 
pursuits, Brophy had some employment connected with 
Doctor Steevens' Hospital. I have heard that he used to 
repair or clean some instruments for the use of the insti- 
tution ; but I know that when he had attained to extensive 
practice and the incident advantages, he frequently evinced 
a great desire for the prosperity and advancement of it, 
and he frequently visited the old hospital, to all the wards 
of which he had full access. There was a stringent pro- 
hibition of the smoking of tobacco by any person what- 

340 Ihventi/ Years^ Recollections. 

ever in the wards or passages, and a disobedience or 
neglect of this order was punishable by immediate expul- 
sion from the premises. James Cusack, who, as a sur- 
geon, was not to be surpassed, was the principal of the 
professional authorities, and he entertained a peculiar 
abhorrence of the slightest fume of tobacco being observed 
on the premises. On an afternoon stroll I accompanied 
Brophy until we were within a few yards of the building, 
when Cusack's carriage came rapidly up, and he alighted, 
and entered as soon as possible the principal male ward, 
in the most distant bed of which he saw a man in a sit- 
ting posture and smoking a pipe. The offender, perceiving 
that he was detected, reclined back, and drew the bed- 
clothes about his shoulders. Cusack stepped rapidly to 
the bedside, and said — 

** You have been smoking." 

*' No, sir." 

'*I saw you, you lying scoundrel." 

«* No, sir." 

Cusack was standing close to the culprit, and turning 
round, he shouted for the attendants, who hurried to him ; 
along with them Brophy and I entered the ward, when 
Cusack resumed — 

" This man has been smoking tobacco ; the pipe was in 
his mouth when I came into the ward." 

** No, sir." 

*' You have the pipe in the bed \vith you." 

« No, sir." 

" Lift this fellow to another bed, and see that he has 
nothing wrapped in his shirt." 

The order was obeved, and then the vacated bed was 
strictly searched, the bolster, quilt, blankets, sheets, and 
mattress separately examined, but no pipe was forth- 
coming. Cusack repeated his positive assertions, that he 
had seen the fellow smoking, but he could only elicit 
another "No, sir." He was retiring from the ward, not 
perplexed in his conviction of having witnessed the for- 
bidden indulgence, but disappointed and annoyed at the 
friiitlesa search. . Retuinin^ to tbe offender, he said — 

A Dublin Dentist. 341 • 

" I promise to forgive you fully, and leave you quite 
unpunished, if you. now tell me where you put the pipe." 

" Try your own pocket, sir." 

Cusack put his hand in the back pocket of his overcoat, 
and there found the pipe, which the delinquent had slipped 
in as the other had turned about to call the attendants. 

Great laughter supervened, in which the eminent and 
aTniable James Cusack heartily joined. When we were 
leaving the hospital, Brophy went into the ward and gave 
the smoker half-a-crpwn, and on our way home he re- 
marked that the fellow deserved a reward, as undoubtedly 
his trick upon Cusack was " as good as a play." 

An intimate friend, whom I could also term a school- 
fellow, named Vickers, was my companion on a Sunday 
walk in the summer of 1852, and we happened to direct 
our course to the Royal Hospital of Kilmainham, and 
finding that the door of the grounds so long used as a 
public cemetery was open, we entered, and seated ourselves 
in the centre of the inclosure, formerly known as " Bully's 
Acre," or the Hospital Fields, resting ourselves on the 
remains of an old monument, and enjoying the prospect 
presented by the varied and undulating surface of the 
Phoenix Park, and the rich country in its vicinity. My 
companion had been a medical student in his youth, and 
he related an adventure which the locality suggested to 
his recollection, and with the results of which Brophy was 
stated to have been unpleasantly and unprofitably con- 
nected. His narrative was as follows : — 

*' We had a very stirring row in that corner one night, 
when I was apprentice to old Aby Colles ; for at that time 
we had generally to provide our own subjects, or to pur- 
chase them, at a very high price, from men who followed 
the calling of " sack-em-ups ;" and as money was not 
always plenty, we used to form parties for the purpose of 
invading this and other burial-grounds, and exhuming the 
bodies. Brophy, the dentist, had a brother named Maurice, 
whom he was desirous of putting into the medical profes- 
sion. He was a manly, generous fellow, and possessed a 
very strong inclination for anything tVv2i\. 'i.evvCkXft.^ sixsXKt- 

■ 842 Twenty Yeari EecoUections, 

prise, or promised excitement, Pat had taken a cottage 
and garden in Rathmines, and for his whim or amnsement 
he went into a shop in Kennedy's Lane and purchased a 
spade ; and having given his address, the seller wrote the 
name and address on the handle of the implement. The 
spade was sent home, and upon the same day a party was 
organised, of which I constituted one, to visit this place 
and disinter two or three bodies that had been buried in 
the morning. I mentioned to Maurice the project we had 
formed, and he eagerly joined in the undertaking. All 
was arranged ; and we drove out to this place, left our 
cars at a little distance, and entered the ground, deter- 
mined to work silently and quickly. However, our volun- 
teer friend had provided himself with his brother's spade, 
and certainly used it with great despatch, although not so 
noiselessly as might be wished. But we had been watched. 
We were seen entering the cemetery, and a body of men, 
armed with every rough weapon that they could procure, 
came suddenly upon us. We had to retreat, and made a 
running fight until we reached the wall, and there our 
associate was attacked by a man who, with fearful impre- 
cations, declared he would have his life. Blows were 
quickly interchanged ; the combatants closed ; and a fierce 
struggle occurred, which was terminated by Maurice urg- 
ing his antagonist to the wall, and very speedily pitching 
him over ; the depth at the other side was at least ten 
feet, although where the encounter occurred was only a 
foot or two lower than the wall top. The man fell, ex- 
claiming that he was murdered. He groaned heavily; 
and we succeeded with great difficulty, and not without 
some severe blows from sticks and stones, in efifecting an 
escape from a scene where we felt almost fully convinced 
that we had left a warm corpse in our attempt to obtain a 
cold one. 

" On reaching Dublin, I accompanied Maurice to the 
house of his brother, who was greatly alarmed at our ap- 
pearance, and still more at our narration of the adventure. 
When it was concluded, he eagerly asked where was the 
spade^ and on being ap^m^^ \Xv2A. Sx. \ia.^ Vj^^ti l^-ft in the 

A Dublin Dentist. 343 

cemetery, he exclaimed that we would all be hung, or at 
best transported. ' I knew,' said he to his brother, * that 
you would get yourself into an infernal scrape sooner or 
later ; and now your only chance is to set off on foot, and 
make your way to Naas. I shall have an inside seat 
taken in the Limerick day-coach for a gentleman who will 
get in there ; make your way to Limerick, and we will try 
and manage a passage for you from some southern part to 
get abroad.' Arrangements were made with brief despatch ; 
our companion departed ; and the dentist retired to an un- 
easy bed, perplexed by fears of coroner's inquest, wilful 
murder, hue and cry, apprehension, trial, conviction, and 
execution of his unlucky brother. 

** Next morning he had scarcely finished his breakfast 
when he was informed that M'Donough, the peace-officer, 
required to see him. He admitted the unwelcome visitant, 
and was informed that his orders* were to bring Mr. 
Brophy immediately to the Head Police-Office, and to keep 
him from communicating with any other person before he 
arrived there. There was no further explanation; and 
Brophy thought it prudent to refrain from any question 
beyond asking if he might take a car. This was at once 
acceded to ; and as the peace-officer and his quasi prisoner 
were getting on the vehicle, a woman rapidly approached 
and screamed forth the dentist's name. He ascribed this 
circumstance to the grief or resentment of a bereaved 
widow or sister, who thought that she beheld in him one 
of the murderous authors of her misery ; but the car drove 
off rapidly, and the police-office was reached without any 
further incident or interruption. 

'' The office was crowded, and at the table was seated 
Mr. William Hall, an attorney. Brophy and he were well 
acquainted, and a salute passed between them as the den- 
tist sat down near the other. The magistrates were in 
their private room, engaged in some conference or consul- 
tation. After the lapse of a few minutes, Brophy ven- 
tured a word to Mr. Hall. 

* Such orders were not unusual in loxicv^t \a\&%.%. 

544 Twenty Year^ Recollections. 

" * This is a very unpleasant business, Billy/ 

" * Very annoying, indeed,' replied the other, * I hate 
not met a more unpleasant case for some time.' 

" ' Billy, would a little money be of any avail ?' 

" ' Why, my dear fellow, thirty pounds would put an 
end to it altogether.' 

*' * Thirty pounds 1 Don't say another word. Here's the 
money. I depend on you that all will be right.' 

"The magistrates* entered, and Billy Hall immediately 
proceeded to express his great gratification that it would 
not be necessary, or indeed possible, to go any further with 
the charge then pending before them. * In fact,' said he, 
* it is impossible to continue the prosecution, for the re- 
spectable gentleman, whose name was alleged to have been 
forged, has paid the bill, and it is now my duty to have 
it handed over to him in your worship's presence.' 

^^ A bill of exchange was delivered, in compliance with 
Hall's direction, to Patrick Brophy, who found his name 
written as drawer upon it, in a manner closely resembling 
his own signature. Evidently surprised, he exclaimed that 
he thought he had been sent for on another matter. 

** ' What other matter, sir?" inquired Major Sirr, 

** * Oh, nothing, nothing, sir,' said the enraged but fearful 
Brophy, who felt that an explanation, which would relieve 
him from the loss just incurred, might involve his brother 
Maurice in an accusation of dreadful import. * Perhaps,' 
said a peace-officer, ' the gentleman knows something about 
a spade which we have below. We stopped a young vaga- 
bond pledging it on the Coombe, and it appaars quite new. 
There was a name and direction on the handle, but the 
fellow scraped it almost entirely out. We have found, 
however, on inquiry in Kennedy's Lane, that this gentl*^ 
man bought such a spade at Bryan Murphy's, yesterday.' 

" ' That spade/ said Brophy, * is gone from Dublin. 
It was bought for a friend, and is forty mile« away by 
this time.' 

* 1 have often heard Pemberton and Ross Cox describe this scene 
as fully remembered by xYvem. 

A Dublin Dentist 845 

"'Tlien, what other business were you thinking of ?" 
resumed the inquisitive Major. 

*' * Perhaps,' suggested Alderman Darley, * his anxiety 
refers to the young woman from Dolphin's Bam, who is 
charged with concealing the birth of her infant, and who 
so obstinately refuses to tell who is its father.' 

*' ' Alas 1 for the depravity of man,' said the Major. 
* Shall we never be free from vice and its consequences, 
sin and sorrow, crime and punishment ?' 

" ' Why, Major,' said Brophy, taking courage, * I don't 
think you'll be quite free of them in a hurry ; but I'd 
like to find out the other parties concerned in this darling 
bill, for, by G ■ , I'll make some of them pay it if 
I can.' 

" * Fie, sir !' said the Major. ' It is plain that a mistaken 
lenity has led you to adopt a forgery ; and 1 only hope 
that there may be more of them in circulation ; for now 
having paid one, you cannot refuse the others ; and as it 
is, I have a strong inclination to fine you for blasphemous 

" * Don't mind it, Major,' said Brophy, ' I won't swear 
any more ; but when I get out of this, I think that I'll 
curse a little." 

" He departed, having paid thirty pounds for a forgery 
of his own name, and had no consolation beyond discover- 
ing, which he did very soon, that the fellow who had been 
thrown over the wall was not dead, nor even materially 
injured, and had taken his beating without making much 
noise about it, once it was over. The spade had been 
found by some poor vagrant, who sought quietly to dis- 
pose of it. Maurice was brought home again, and Pat 
was forced to acknowledge, amongst his bantering associ- 
ates, that the spade had turned up 'a trump' for the 

dd6 Twenty Year^ RecolUclions. 





I TOOK a run to Belfast in 1862, and from thence ihroiigli 
Carrickfergus, and along the coast-road to the Giant's 
Causeway, where I spent two days most agreeably. At the 
Causeway hotel I met several gentlemen, to one of whom I 
was known, and by him was introduced to the others. Their 
society was extremely pleasant ; for although they differed 
in their views and opinions on certain subjects, their con- 
versation was completely free from acerbity. In referring 
to the preference of certain colors by the inhabitants of 
northern or southern districts, an anecdote was related of 
a wrangle between two young fellows who had come from 
very distant parts of Ireland, to be employed in one of the 
great monetary establishments of Dublin, and who resided 
at Sandy mount. I have not introduced into my preceding 
pages any expressions indicative of political or religious 
preferences, and I think that the '^ wrangle'' may be sub- 
mitted to the perusal of all parties or sects without offend- 
ing their feelings or exciting their prejudices. I thought 
it curious and amusing, and it induced me to attempt to 
narrate, in a versified form, the antagonistic tendencies 


" There is a flowV I dearly love, and which with pride I bear 
Upon my head, or next my heart, none with it can compare; 
It is the Orange Lily, to which gloiious memories cling. 
Of Derry, Boyne, or Aughrim, 'twill the recollection bring. 
Some roots I have procured to plant, and when their flow'rs 

I'll hail them as the emblems of the cause I hold most dear.** 
Thus spoke a sturdy Northern lad. A Munster boy was nigh, 
And heard the words whicVi, Vi^ eot^ews^d, wvuia^ilt did imply. 

Metrical Attempts, 347 

" I hate, I loathe your gaudy flow'r," disdainfully he cried ; 
'' It shall not grow, its tints to show, wherever I abide. 
Tour lily shall be trampled if it ever meets my sight." 
The blood of both was thus aroused and eager for a fight ; 
An aged man reproved them, bade their bitter taunts to cease, 
And then suggested that his taste each might indulge in peace. 
" My friend, I'll plant ^our lily, let its color glad your eyes. 
No hateful green shall intervene to rival its rich dyes. 
There 's space enoogh throughout the land where those who love 

to see 
The verdant hue may freely view the sod, the shrub, the tree.** 
The old man took the lily roots entrusted to his care, 
With which the rival youths agreed no mere to interfere. 
In genial soil, of aspect warm, at once he planted them, 
But as each primal leaf arose he nipp*d it from the stem. 
He said the green must not appear the orange flow'r beside. 
The blossom bright should meet the sight in undisputed pride. 
But then the blosRom, lone and bare, without the friendly aid 
Of leaves to shield its rising stem soon wither*d and decay*d. 
The abortive root unto the youths the old man then display*d. 
" Both colors are essential to the perfect flow*r,*' he said. 
'* You cannot have the orange if tne green you take away, 
The plant affords a lesson — may it reach your hearts, I pray.'* 


I shall venture to offer two or three more productions 
to the readers of these pages. If my metrical attempts 
are considered even below mediocrity, they will serve to 
make others more acceptable. The coarse, homely attire 
of the peasant is a foil tending strongly to enhance admi- 
ration for the courtly costumes of the upper classes ; and 
the weeds that blossom in our hedgerows, or on the sides 
of our highways, render us unconsciously more apprecia- 
tive of the floral beauties displayed in the gardens of 
of aristocratic mansions. My own recollections enable me 
to compare much of the past with the present, and render 
me desirous of endeavouring to describe some of the 
changes which have occurred since — 


Yon tree whose massive timber 

The storms assail in vain, 
Tve seen a sapling limber 

A child might rend in l\«fiL\\vs 

348 Twenty Tears^ Recollections, 

Anil in the churchyard yonder. 
It's planter 's lying low, 

Wliilst on its growth I ponder, 
And think of Lonq Ago. 

Yon brook that quickly courses 

To turn the busy mill, 
Then spent its unclaimed forces 

Adown the heath-clad hill. 
The heather to plantation 

Has yielded, and below, 
A bustling railway station 

Contrasts with Long Ago. 

The breeze is freshly blowing 

Full in yon harbour's face, 
And yet some craft are going 

Their wat'ry way to trace. 
The adverse wind unheeding, 

The waves aside they throw ; 
By steam their journey speedinc: — 

How changed from Long Ago. 

I meet a friend— he mentions 

That news of import grand, 
O'er half the earth's dimensions 

Has reach'd the Irish land. 
Th' events occurr'd this morning, 

And now each fact we know 
By an electric warning, 

Undreamt of Long Ago. 

The village school is ending 

Its labours for the day, 
Each child, released, is wending 

Its joyous homeward way. 
Blithe be their youthful gambols, 

UncheckVi by care or woe, 
As were my boyhood's rambles, 

How long, how Long Ago. 

And as my tott*ring paces 

Proceed, there 's at my side 
One whom for varied graces J 

I gladly maXe my bride. - ^ 

Her dark hair then contrasted 

With locks now tinged with snow, 
But stVVV owT Xo-vft "Vvaa \«ax^^ 

The same &a LiOtro Kgo. 

Metrical Attempts. 349 

Thus let it be for ever — 

Let Youth enjoy its time ; 
Let Age, contented, never 

Regret its vanished prime. 
Life's joys, life's hopes, life's duties, 

Each passing year will show. 
And retrospective beauties 

Appear in Long Ago. 

nongst the pictures which have, within my memory, 
exhibited in Dublin, one painted by Paul Delaroche 
•egarded by me with surpassing admiration, in which 
ig I was certainly not singular, for I found it equally 
jciated by many others who viewed it at Le Sage's in 
irille Street. It was said to have originated in an 
.ordinary reverie of the artist, who, whilst suffering 
fever, imagined that he beheld the corse of a young 
beautiful female, whose hands and feet had been 
ly bound, drifting along a deep and rapid river. On 
ering from his malady, Delaroche delineated this 
1, and then considered what title he should give the 
iction. On searching the records of martyrdom he 
[ not discover the name of any sainted victim of per- 
ion who had perished in the manner indicated ; but 
ig that the Emperor Diocletian had, about the year 
ir Lord 30Q, caused some hundreds of his Christian 
cts to be drowned in the Tiber for refusing to abjure 
faith, he named the picture *' La Marty re Chretienne." 
8 been engraved, lithographed, and photographed so 
I, as to evince a general admiration of the conception 
artistic power of the painter. I have written some 
on this subject, and have endeavoured to adopt the 
; of Ariosto, which I consider not unsuitable to an 
3nt connected with Italy and the ancient days of the 
lal City. The concluding stanza alludes to the lam- 
circle which, in the painting, appears above the head 

350 Twenty Yeara^ Recollections. 


The sedgy margin of his yellow stream 
Beholds old Tiber rolling to the main, 

In eddies silver*d by the struggling beam, 
Wooing the ripples which it can*t retain. 

A mataal mockery, a vapVy dream, 
Illasive, unsubstantial, cold, and vain 

As human hopes, like everything of earth. 

Passing, nnpausing, dying e*en in birth. 

That river has beheld the glorious day 

When chaste Lncretia's wrongs awoke the ire 

That freed her country from the Tarquin's sway ; 
Upon that bank Virginia from her sire, 

LoaUiing the brutal Appins to obey. 
When in his breast there raged a base desire. 

In her pure heart received the fatal knife, 

Preferring death to a dishonor'd life. 

Upon that bank in youthful beauty stood 
The virgin Clcelia, when with high disdain 

She scorn'd Porsenna's pow'r, and deem*d the flood 
Was easier to stem than tyrant's chain 

Could be endured : and there the multitude 
Of foes on Codes fiercely press'd in vain, 

There, one 'gainst thousands, he maintained his post, 

And foil'd the foremost of Etruria's host. 

Upon that classic bank did Mutius stand. 
And in the midst of his astonish'd foes 

Upon the altar there he placed his hand 

Unshrinking, round it whilst the flames arose. 

To show th' invader of his native l^d 
How he could scorn the torture's fiercest throes. 

And that no tyrant's power could be secure 

Against a patriot's purpose, firm and pure* 

All these were high and noble in their dariog, 
In distant ages were their deeds achieved, 

But they had earthly motives strongly bearing 
Them onward in their course, for they believed 

That man would honor them. Nor scant nor sparing 
Has been the classic fame they have received, 

And history still delights to gild her pages 

With deeds like theita Itom^m^^t^vu^d^v^TsX^k^es* 

Metrical Attempts, 851 

But still old Tiber^s coarse hath onward sped, 

And other incidents of higher fame 
Have on his banks a holy lustre shed, 

There Diocletian did his will proclaim — 
That to the ancient stream there should be led 

His Christian subjects, and the sacred name 
Of Christ should be abjured, or Tiber's wave 
Should those engulf who own'd His pow*r to saye. 

In youthful innocence a beauteous maid 

Stands 'mongsttbe victims doom'd with lips compressed, 
And eyes already closed — she hath essay'd 

To banish earthly thoughts. Upon her breast 
Her hands are folded — she hath meekly pray'd, 

And He to whom her pray'r has been addressed, 
To whom she clings all faithful, gives her pow*r 
To meet the terrors of life's closing hour. 

They bind her hands — she heeds not the infliction 
Of cords that sink into her tender limb ; 

She, thinking of her Saviour's crucifixion — 
Her soul hath flown to Calvary to Him. 

She meekly hears each heathen malediction, 
Heav'n seems to ope as earth appears more dim ; 

Her fate severe for thrones she would not barter, 

And now she sinks — a Christian Maiden Martyr I 

Her form is slowly gliding to the sea, 
Her soul to Paradise its way is winging. 

Upon her pallid face serenity 
Shows that to earth her heart was never clinging; 

To all the elements her corse may be 
Abandoned, but the seraph choir is singing, 

And chaplets fairer than the flow'rs of Eden 

In Heav'n shall deck the martyr'd Christian maiden. 

Still o*er her drifting form a circlet golden 
Upon the river sheds its lambent rays. 

As though it would the lively hope embolden 
The martyr's truth shall shine in future days, 

And when her bones have moulder'd deep and cold in 
Their ocean grave, men shall accord their praise 

To him whose reverie or vision mystic 

Her suff'rings shall depict with grace artistic. 

352 Twenty Years' Recollections. 

The following lines were suggested by a visit to an ex- 
tensive paper manufactory at Inchicore, which, I regret 
to say, is not working at present ; — 

I 8TRAT*D along a village street, 
And as in listless mood I wander*d, 

The breeze had wafted to my feet 
Something on which awhile I ponder'd. 

Was it a precioas talisman, 
Whose magic tracings doth nnfold 

A right by which its bearer can 

Claim and obtain the treasured gold ? 

Was it a'flow'r with tints array*d 

Such as the vernal suns bestow, 
Richer than monarch e'er display 'd, 

Was it a fragrant flowret ? No I 

Was it a feather dropt away 
From some wild bird of varied hues ? 

From moors whereon the plovers stray, 
Or groves wherein the ringdove coos ? 

Was it the down the thistle yields, 
That sails through air like drifting snow ? 

Or fairy flax from fenny fields, 
Or plume from warrior's helmet? No ! 

Or manhood's locks, or maiden's hair, 
Wafted by breeze through village street ? 

Nor this, nor these — but lying there 
A filthy rag was at my feet. 

With dirt begrimed, that remnant mean, 
Crushed in the mire, I saw no more ; 

But yet I mused on what had been 
Its various uses heretofore. 

The great, the humble, grave or gay, 
Noble or base, whoe'er it clothed, 

Beject it now, and cast away, 
Tis only seen but to be loathed. 

Metrical Attempts. «3'53 . 

Sach were my thoughts till slamber came. 

And then by fancy's vivid light 
Methought that rag, the very same — 

Appear'd again before my sight. 

No longer were its folds defiled, 

Bat pure and white it seem'd as snow, 

And 'neath-a roller whirling wild, 
I saw the worthless fragment go. 

And bleach'd and clean, by that machine 

*Twas. triturated fast ; 
And when *twas found completely groand, 

O'er wires its pulp was pass'd. 

And on and on that rag hath gone, 

*Neath cylinders I traced it, 
And there it roll'd through heat and cold, 

Whilst giant force embraced it. 

And I could mark th* electric spark* 

Gleam like a fairy taper ; 
And fair and smooth as the brow of yonth, 

That filthy rag was Papbb. 

Material fit for Holy Writ 

And tidings of salvation — 
Material grand for a struggling land, 

When seeking liberation. 

Materia] proud to warn aloud 

'Gainst slavery's subtle meshes — 
Material true to teach the few 

The many 's rights are precious. 

Material meet for tidings sweet 

Of distant recollection — 
Material best to purge each breast 

Of Bigotry's infection. 

?he paper, when coiled upon the receiving roller, is very elec* 
I, until it becomes perfectly cool. If the hand is held witbltt' 
)r six inches of it, sparks are elicited, and a lucifer mateb-mA/' 
nked witlu)a( bringing it nearer to the " materiaU" 

A Review, 355 

<3e la Bastile, a distance of about three English miles. It 
is resorted to by the most respectable classes. There are 
"Wooden booths erected at both sides of the Boulevaid, on 
'^Iie footways; and the articles offered for sale comprise 
** everything, and anything else you may wish for." 
Children have their toys and confections. Hats, lamps, 
siloes, boots, jewels, hosiery, glass, birds, mountebanks, 
xiewspapers, portable baths, guns, groceries, gloves, cutlery, 
lalse teeth, false beards, false eyes, false legs, tempt the 
Cidults. There are, however, no horses, cattle, sheep, or 
3 wine offered for sale, the live stock, consisting only of 
poultry, rabbits, pigeons, and Guinea-pigs. To an Irish- 
xnan it is a fair only in name. I visited it frequently, and 
saw it early and late, but I did not hear an altercation or 
see a fis:ht, or any person intoxicated. Oh, Donnybrook ! 
liow different from your defunct glories ! How could a * 
I'atlander recognise any resemblance in a scene of peace- 
able amusement, excited and busy, but without a reel or 
^ blow, to the classic spot, where *' batin' was chape as 
dijrt '' amongst 

''Hearts soft with whisky, and heads soft with blows."? 


I was at a review in honor of the Emperor's birth-day, 
ol: perhaps it should be termed the '' Napoleon day," for 
It was held on the i5th of August, 1864, the real natal . 
clay of the third Napoleon being the 20th of April, and 
"the other day being the anniversary of the first Napoleon's 
aiativity in 1769. There were more than 100,000 troops- 
on the ground, the Champ de Mars, but nearly the half 
"were Naltional Guards. The concourse of spectators was 
immense. When his Imperial Majesty arrived, there was 
XK>t a hat raised, neither was there a shout uttered, nor a i 
shot fired. The troops defiled before him in slow and 
quick time, and then he departed. I must have been . 
afflicted on that day with temporary deafness, for I saw it 
aanoonoed in. several newspapers of the folio win^xxv(yB.\^^sk!^<^ ^ 

956 Twenty Ywri BecoUections. 

that his Majestj had been received with the loadeit 


Neither at the review to which I have adverted, nor at 
the ascent of Nadar*s giant balloon, where a still greater 
multitude were assembled, did I see an intoxicated person, 
or witness any disturbance or altercation. I am far from 
averring' that intoxication does not occur amongst the 
l^rench, but I believe it to be very infrequent. On a 
eummerfs evening, in the Avenue de Neuilly, I observed 
three workmen, and they were inebriated. Each of them 
was insisting that the other two should carry him, and 
they successively tried the experiment, but it terminated 
always in the tumbling of the three. The spectators were 
laughing,, and the fellows themselves seemed to enjoy the 
fun, without the slightest asperity towards those who 
indulged in merriment at their falls. I thought that in 
my own country there would have been a very prompt 
offer made, by any tipsy fellows who were laughed at, to 
supply the company present with an immediate assort- 
ment of darkened eyes and ensanguined noses. 


Some of our words have been pretty generally adopted 
by the Parisians. '^ Sport" ia frequently used iu refereoce 
to hunting and racing, but I never heard it applied to 
shooting or coursing ; and it ia remarkable that the word, 
with the addition of an ^^e," also signifies the baaket of a 
mendicant friar. Le Turfis^ as a racing teirm, understood 
in. the same sense as amongst ourselves; and the mono- 
syllable by which we express a pugilistic contest, is used 
to invite or describe an encounter between two combatants 
who are unprovided with weapons. Outside a wine-house^ 
at Vaugirard, I witnessed a quarrel, and. heard the invita* 
tioDi ^^' Voulezrvous box f The affair commenced by the 
parties stripping off theVx \>\q\x&%%v^^ ^^"^^^th' railed. 

Liquor Vehicles, 857 

.nd open hands, capering before each other, as if 
Qg an opportunity to strike. I did not see a box 
for, after a few feints, one combatant gave the other 
111 kick in the pit of the stomach, which stretched 
. the greatest agony, and loud acclamations from 
st the bystanders greeted the conqueror. On ano- 
ocasion, in the Rue de L'oratoire, after a similar 
ige, the parties did not strike or kick, but had a 
ii, which terminated in one getting the other down ( 
n seated himself on his prostrate antagonist, and 
ied to strike him violently on the head with a wboi^ 
den shoe, without any interference or disapproval 
part of the persons present. A sergent de vUle 
seen the crowd, came up, and required the victor 
e hammering his foe. He was instantly obeyed, die 
shed party arose and decamped, and the police- 
walked on without taking any further notice of the 
A bystander expressed his sympathy with the 
ror, by remarking, that after having gone to the 
! of getting the fellow down, it was a pity that he 
t allowed to punish him. 


1 not at any time in Paris see two persons in attend- 
D any vehicle used in the conveyance of liquor, 
an took charge of a long, narrow dray, on which a 
r of barrels were placed in two, or perhaps three, 
they were secured by ropes passing from rere to 
•bnd there tightened by a kind of capstan, with blurs 
3atch-bolt. There was also a hinge between the 
and the body, which allowed the front to be elettated 
te rere to be lowered. One man managed thiti 
lery, and could deliver the entire or any part of th6 
ith safety and despatch. The adoption of similar 
s in the liquor traffic of our country wotdd b* 
iiy economical; but additional labotir would b6 
rd to lower large casks into underground Cellars, A 
»tion of store which is very uncommon in Paris. 

•358 Twenty Years* Recollections* 


In one of the early productions of my schoolfellow and 
frequent playmate, Samuel Lover, he narrates an anecdote 
of two Dublin hodmen, one of whom expressed doubts as 
to the capability of the other to carry a hod, heavily laden, 
up a ladder to the roof of a high house. This produced, 
on the part of the other, a wager of a gallon of porter, that 
he would carry the very man who had taunted him, in a 
hod, and deliver him over the parapet, five stories above the 
•street. The bet was made, and one fellow seated himself 
in the hod, and was carried by the other safely to the roof; 
lie then acknowledged that he had lost, but added, ** When 
you were about five rungs of the ladder from the top, I 
thought you were getting a little weak, and that / had a 
fine chance of winning the gallon." I do not think such a 
'dangerous wager could arise in Paris, for although very 
extensive buildings were in progress during my sojourn, I 
iiever saw such an implement as a hod there. All the 
^materials were hoisted up by ropes, pulleys, and wind- 
lasses. Horse labour was very much used, and small 
steam-engines were occasionally employed. The lives and 
limbs of the Parisian workmen were consequently sai'e 
^om the. risks incident to a false step or a rotten rung,. 


The French occasionally train animals to exhibit amus- 
ing tricks and tendencies ; and the surprise of a spectator 
is not excited so much by what he sees done, as by the 
conjectures he forms or hears expressed by others, as to 
the means adopted in bringing animals to the observance 
,of extraordinary habits, or the habitual performance of 
prescribed duties. When the Messieurs Pereire were 
.building the magnificent structures which form the Boule- 
vard Malesherbes, a large black English horse was em- 
ployed to raise materials by rope and pulleys. He 
vrorked kindly at bis \a\>oi\o\x% \.Qi&V\ W\ «a soon as the 

A Horse, a Dog, Rats* 859 

"bell rang for breakfast, dinner, or the termination of the 
day's work, he stopped, and would not resume until the 
usual time for feeding or rest had elapsed. 

At the corner of the junction of the Rue de Castiglione 
with the Rue de Rivoli, a shoeblack plied his humble vo- 
cation, and derived great assistance in obtaining employ- 
ment from a poodle dog, that had been trained to run, with 
paws purposely soiled, across the feet of persons coming 
towards his master's bench and brushes. The dog was, 
perhaps, the greatest curiosity in the locality, for he never 
attempted to renew his trespass on the boots or shoes of 
those who had spent two sous in having them polished by 
his proprietor. I have frequently seen him actively en- 
gaged ; but he confined his attentions to the male sex ; 
and I can add, as a circumstance very creditable to those 
on whom his avocation was exercised, that I never saw 
him kicked or struck. His daily duties were of a very 
extraordinary nature ; but far more extraordinary must 
have been the training by which he was qualified for their 

On the Esplanade des Invalides I witnessed a most ex- 
traordinary exhibition. Avery aged man appeared, drawing 
a small four-wheeled truck. He stopped and rang a hand- 
bell for some minutes. When a number of spectators 
had collected, he opened a slide on the top of the truck, 
and in the most endearing terms invited his pets, his 
darlings, to come forth. The darlings came at his call, and 
consisted of about three dozen rats, mostly of a white or 
cream color, with red eyes. They crept up his legs, crowded 
on his head and shoulders, nestled inside his vest, and 
eagerly fed on some fragments of cheese and some Indian 
com, which he produced from a dirty old bag. He then 
took a tin box, in the lid of which there was a hole, suffi- 
cient to admit one rat at a time ; and having given the 
word of command, the " darlings" proceeded to enter. It 
seemed too small to contain the entire number ; but he 
insisted on their entrance, scolded them, and swore vehe- 
mently at their tardiness. At length all had disappeared, 
and I then perceived that the bottom of th^ b^TL hi^& 

860 Twenfi/ Years' BecoUections. 

fastened to the upper part by hooks, which the old tnan 
drew back, and raising the box he displayed a compact f 
mass of rats, packed almost in a square. He gaye the j 
word and they separated, and haying got some water, le- 1 
-entered the truck, and the old fellow sent round the hA 
-to collect a few coppers from the spectators* I oould Dflt 
Tefuse a trifle for an exhibition which I considered veij 
curious, but very disgusting. I looked with loathing npon 
the intimacy between the nasty yermin and their pauper 
master ; and I should have seen, with great satisfaction, 
the entire school consigned to the attentions of half-a-doz^ 





In narrating the incidents that came under my personal 
observation, and the impressions produced hy many of 
them on my mind, during a residence of eighteen months 
-in the French capital, I have to suffer the disadvantage of 
a lapse of ten years, during which some tremendous visi- 
tations have produced very disastrous effects, which may 
be attributed not only to the successful hostility of d 
foreign enemy, but also to the unrestrained and sangui- 
nary violence arising from domestic turbulence. These 
unhappy events may have occasioned changes in the mo- 
rals and habits of the Parisians, which would prevotf 
recent travellers from deeming my descriptions correct 
or my conclusions reasonable. Having premised the pos- 
sibility of a considerable social alteration, I resume, and 
shall advert to certain comparative qualities of ipeiFSODS 
in this country and in Paris, belonging to similar classes, 
presuming to recommend them to the consideration, not 
only of those who may visit the French city, but to all 
who are desirous of the improvement and oirvilized pro- 
gress of thousands around \v%. Let me put sonre implea- 

Contrasts, 361 

sant but truthful contrasts. If I walk, between the hours 
of nine and twelve at night, from Stephen's Green, by 
■Grafton Street, Westmoreland Street, and Sackville Street, 
to the Rotundo, I shall see from two to three dozen intoxi- 
cated females, and hear many loathsome expressions. On 
Monday mornings, there have been frequently upwards 
of fifty femdes convicted before me for drunkenness; 
and it would appear, by the statistical tables of the Dublin 
police, that the numbers have not decreased since my re- 
tirement from office. Now, without stigmatizing my own 
native Dublin as a peculiar locality of public impropriety, 
I would fearlessly assert that the English Metropolitan 
district is as bad, that Liverpool is worse, and our own 
Cork not better. The contrast presented to the reader is, 
-that during a residence of eighteen months in Paris, and 
in that time frequently passing at late hours through 
quarters in whiclr much poverty is to be seen, and to 
-which great immorality is generally ascribed, I never saw 
a female under the influence of liquor, and never heard 
an expression or witnessed a gesture of an indecent cha- 

I ascribe much of the intemperance of thp operative 
classes in Ireland, aye, and in Great Britain also, to the 
absence in general of each sex from the potations of the 
other. I shall venture on a narrative, which the steno- 
graphic talent of Mr. Hughes enabled him to acquire 
-whilst waiting in the yard or lobby of the police-court, and 
listening to a woman detailing the misfortunes of some of 
her friends : — 

" Mrs. Rafferty had just run out to get a grain of tay 
and a quarther of shuggar. Mrs. M 'Mullen, the shoe- 
maker's wife, had a few half-pence left after paying for a 
j)air of soles and some binding ; and was it not quare that 
they should meet Jenny Riordan just round the comer at 
'Cassidy's door ? Cassidy always kept * the best of sper- 
rits, ' and Jenny Riordan stood for little Patsy M*Mullen 
only a fortnight before. Mrs. M'Mullen insisted thart; 
half a glass a-piece would do them no harm, if they'd slip 
into Cassidy's. Well, in they went ; and jast m titfs;^ 

862 Twenty Tears^ Recollections, 

were passing * behind the tay chests,* that all the wotU 
mightn't see them, who should be there but Kitty Laffai 
and Betty Rooney. Poor Betty had just left her sarvice, 
and had half a quarter's wages in her pocket ; and sbs 
wished to explain why she wouldn't stay in that place, as 
her mistress was too particular entirely. They were all 
decent women, that never took more than 'half a glass' 
at a time. But they were all very genteel, and had a 
proper spirit ; so each insisted on ' standing ' until each 
lialf glass had become half a pint. Mrs. M^Mullen got 
home after losing the pair of soles on the way, and got 
terrible usage from her husband. Mrs. Rafferty had a 
little difference with Betty Rooney, and as Betty felt her- 
self rather strong after the last little sup, she cut Mrs. 
Rafferty's head with a pewter quart that happened, un- 
luckily, to be * convenient.' Mrs. Rafferty put Betty's 
eyes into mourning for the next week ; and the big polis- 
nian (I don't know his name, but they call him ^ Coffin- 
foot, because you might bury a child in his shoe) escorted 
the combatants to Chancery Lane." Some more of the 
party were picked up on their way home, and taken to 
Newmarket, and were brought up to the Head Office next 
morning. The husbands of these half- glass takers could 
not say much about the matter, for they had a little jolli- 
fication amongst themselves on the previous Monday, and 
two of them beat their respective wives very severely, for 
daring to go skulking and prying after them, and disturb- 
ing them, under the pretence of getting them home. 

Such was not an exaggerated picture, nor did it deal 
with an unusual occurrence ; but there was a vast differ- 
ence between it and the indulgences of the corresponding 
class in Paris. There, if a married operative took himself 
to the fair of St. Cloud, to the Bois de Boulogne, or Vin- 
cennes, his wife almost invariably not only accompanied 
him, and if they had a family, brought one or two of the 
children with her, but she also assumed the direction of 
the humble festivity over which she presided. Then, as 
to the refreshments, no seclusion was sought : on the 
contrary, if the weather was fiae^ the open air was pre- 

Contrasts. 863 

ferred. Their landlord, their employers, their neighbours 
might, be passing, or perhaps occupying the next tables, 
■whilst the Frenchman and his family were enjoying them- 
selves. The woman shared the wine, beer, coffee, cakes, 
or whatever formed the repast. Their superiors were 
.recognised, and saluted with grave respect. Their acquain- 
tances were accosted with politeness and apparent cor- 
diality, but were not invited to join. Wine was not much 
used ; beer, of German or English manufacture, especially 
the latter, was the drink most desired. The man sat, 
chatted, and smoked ; the woman occupied herself with 
'the children, or perhaps with needle-work. The various 
incidents of a French metropolitan thoroughfare or plea- 
sure-grounds amused and sometimes excited them. In- 
toxication and its concomitant indecencies and absurdities 
were ignored. A man could not but feel repiisnance to 
; ex cess in the presence of his wife, and with his children 
almost at his knees ; and, moreover, publicity is an impor- 
tant auxiliary to the promotion and maintenance of deco- 
rum. In the British empire, the respectability of a neigh,- 
bourhood is considered a valid reason against granting 
a licence for the sale of liquor to be consumed on the pre- 
mises, in the vicinity. In Paris, there is a restaumnt in 
.the gardens of the Tuileries, another at the Luxembourg, 
and two within the palatial grounds of St. Cloud, unless 
recent events have caused their suppression, which there 
is no reason to suppose to have occurred. In every part 
.of France that I visited, I felt convinced that the policy 
was to have liquors moderately supplied to sober cus- 
tomers, and to impart full publicity to the sale and con- 
sumption. Amongst us the classes of society are sepa- 
rated from the view, and consequently from the moral 
influences of each other ; and licensed public-houses in all 
our populous localities are provided with places arranged 
for the reception and refreshment (?) of the lower orders, 
where they may meet "no one better than themselves " — 
where they may skulk in and reel out. 

I turn to another topic which involved a great and very 
apparent difference between the operative and labourvxs^ 

3()4 Twenty Yeark^ BecoUectums. 

classes who came Tinder my observation in Paris 
those of corresponding grades in my own country. In the 
French capital, works were in progress of a most extensite 
nature. Great eminences «i^ere to be lerelied, and ralley* 
filled np ; old streets were to disappear, to be replaced by 
spacious Boulevards, lined with splendid nransions. I W8» 
informed that upwards of 200,000 labouring men were 
employed in daily toilsome work, but to avoid any imputa- 
tion of an exaggerated statement, I shall suppose the 
number not to exceed one-half of the thousands menl^oneA 
by my informants. As to those whom I saw engaged in 
mere labour, one look at their wrists and ankles— one glance 
at their weather-bronzed features and high obeek bones 
would suffice to satisfy any observer of the unceasing ex- 
ertions incident to their avocations. Their necks were 
open, and a hat or cap, a blouse, trousers, shoes, and 
stockings were the only garments to be seen. Their clothes 
in general appeared old and worn ; a patched elbow, a 
patched knee was to be seen with the great majority : but 
amongst them I looked repeatedly, but invariably in vain, 
for even <me ragged man, I may mention that the words 
'* UM kque '' (a rag) was considered amongst the lower 
classes in Paris as expressive of the utmost contempt for 
the person, male or female, to whom it would be applied. 


To such of my readers as may visit Paris, I presume to 
suggest that they will be amused and perhaps surprised 
by examining two or three French kitchens. The space 
appropriated to culinary purposes, even in establishments 
containing numerous inmates, is in general less than one- 
half the size of the apartment used for similar purposes 
amongst us. The cooking is done by ** a range,** which 
usually occupies one-third of the room. Covers, sitew- 
pans, saucepans, salad baskets, ladles, &c., appear on the 
shelves or hang thickly upon the walls. They are very 
cleanly in appearance. The French own Cayenne, but I 
iieyer met a French cook who was acquainted with such a 

French Kitchens, 365 

stimulant as Cayenne pepper, nor did I ever see it at 
table. Mushrooms are profusely used in a variety of 
ways, and by their extensive artificial cultivation, are pro- 
oorable almost in all seasons, but catsup appears to- be 
unknown, nor is there, a specific word in the language- by 
which, it can be expressed. The French have been con- 
t^mptuoudy designated '* frog-eaters," but if you. wish to 
indulge in a repast of frogs, you will have to pay as much 
for it. as would procure you a far larger portion of turtle 
ioL London or liverpooL The hind-quarters of the frog are 
the only parts used in French cookery. Snails are highly 
esteemed, and enormous quantities are displayed for sale, 
in baskets or barrels, at certain houses, which exhibit 
ioscriipdons that they are celebrated for snails (specialite 
pour escargots.) I tried a plate once, and must candidly 
admit that. the. stomach overcame the palate, or perhaps I. 
should; say that prejudice conquered judgment. I have 
never seen them served up to table, unless in soup, and 
my plate contained at least a dozen. I took one, thought 
it a delicious morsel, swallowed it, and essayed. another.. 
Nothing could be nicer, and down it went,, but then my 
stomach suggested that I was eating snails. In vain the 
palate pleaded ; I could go no further, and compromised 
with the stomach that if it retained the two, no more 
should be offered. I do not consider myself an epicure, 
but can easily imagine that a lover of dainties might regret 
that he had not been trained in early life to take, without 
repugnance, a mess of snails. 

If, you fancy corned beef and the vulgar vegetable which 
is. abundantly used, but never named at our tables- by lips, 
polite, let, your thoughts revert to home, and postpone the 
repast, until your return, for at a French table it is not to 
be seen. If you get a nice slice of ham you are at liberty: 
to wish for a little strong Irish mustard to give it a relish ;. 
the French mustard is made with vinegar and flavored 
with garlic, and is ceitainly a very unpleasant contrast to 
ourSb If you wish for pepper or salt, turn the haft of your 
silver or plated fork and help yoiurself with it. I never 
saw a salt-spoon or pepper-<;astor at a French table% 

366 Twenty Years* Recollections. 


The shops on the principal commercial thoroughfares 
of Paris are tastefully constructed, and their internal 
arrangements, in almost every instance, appear creditable 
to the proprietor and convenient to his customers. Still, 
I do not think that Grafton Street, College Green, Dame 
Street, Westmoreland Street, or Sackville Street, would be 
disparaged by a comparison with the Parisian streets in 
which similar trades are pursued as those to which in the 
above-mentioned places, the Dublin shops are appropriated. 
Perhaps I should not employ the term " shop," for it 
appears to have fallen greatly into disuse, and to have been 
supplanted by houses, temples, halls, emporiums, maga- 
zines, bazaars, institutions, and repositories. I like the 
old respectable, bread-winning word ; and I cannot forget 
the expression attributed to the first Napoleon, that te 
overcame every difficulty until he had to encounter the 
hostility of '* ships and shops." However, I fear I am 
digressing, and shall proceed to notice some differences 
which a tourist may observe between our shops and those 
of Paris. In my opinion, nothing proves the advance of 
education, although of a very limited nature, in Dublin 
more than the almost universal abandonment of signs and 
peculiar designations over our shops. In my early boy- 
hood, few of the laboring class, or even of the domestic 
servants, could read. It was hazardous to send a messen- 
ger to Messrs. Worthington and Dawson, hardware mer- 
chants, 27 Thomas Street. Signs were absolutely necessary 
for those who could not read ; so we had the *' New Fry- ■ 
ing Pan," the " Golden Boot," the " Three Nuns," the 
''Plough," the "Raven," and hundreds of others dis- 
played. Nicknames were sometimes advantageous to 
traders; O'Brien of Christ Church yard would rather 
have his till plundered than be deprived of his designa- 
tion of " Cheap John." "Squinting Dick's" was an un- 
failing direction to a rich trader's in Mary's Abbey, where 
he vievred both sides of V.\ift ^Vt^^\, laX. k^xna ^ance. In • 

Shops and Signs, 367 

France, I feel convinced that the education of the 
'' million" has not advanced as it has with us, and con- 
sequently signs and peculiar titles for commercial estab- 
lishments are extensively used. In Paris the number and 
variety is astonishing, and in some instances very irreve- 
rent. That name, at the mention of which every knee 
should bend, is over more than one shop. Saintly names 
and effigies designate many houses engaged in the sale of 
mere worldly wares or fashionable vanities. A picture of 
the first Napoleon is displayed on one house as "La Red- 
ingote Grise," (the grey riding coat,) and on another he 
appears as '*Le Petit Caporal" (the little corporal.) Some 
signs bespeak the patronage of the aristocratic legitimists, 
others refer to French progress in the arts, or prowess in 
the battle-field. Some of the shops amuse by ludicrous 
propinquities. In the Rue de Rivoli one house, over the 
door of which Cupid appears persistently stationary, is 
inscribed with an announcement of marriage outfits ; next 
door to it is an extensive establishment of baby linen. On 
one of the Boulevards, St. Michael the archangel is only 
a door removed from — the prophet Mahomet. 

I have to enunciate a deliberate opinion, which to those 
who have not visited the French capital will undoubtedly 
appear extraordinary, and perhaps be by them considered 
exaggerated. It is to the effect that if I had to select the 
Parisian shop most worthy of a prize for comparative 
cleanliness, beauty of internal arrangement, quality and 
variety of productions incident to the trade, I should feel 
bound to award the preference to some one of the many 
shops belonging to Butchers. In nearly all these con- 
cerns, whether small or spacious, it would be almost im- 
possible to suggest any improvement. There is one be- 
longing to Duval, in the Rue Tronchet, just at the rere of 
the Madeleine, well deserving of an express visit. An 
entire house is appropriated to make a shop, and nothing 
intervenes between the floor and the roof. Over the front, 
as emblems of the trade, you see gilded ox-heads and the 
horns of deer displayed. You enter on a floor neatly 
mattedi or in summer sprinkled with Y(hLt^ %-Q)Skji« XV>&; 

368 Twenty Years' Recollections. 

meat lies on slabs of white marble, or hangs from books of 
polished steel, and the scales are sheeted with porcelain. 
Stools, well padded, and covered with green lealiier afford 
you a seat. On the shelves, and in the recesses, bouquets 
of flowers and pots of the choicest exotics gratifj your 
sight and smell. A fountain with a rock- work basin ex- 
hibits gold fish and scarlet carp. The cashier is a hand- 
some female, elegantly attired. The aspect of the place 
tends to excite an appetite, for no idea of an impure or 
disgusting nature can be suggested by anything in your 
view. The front closes with lattice rails, which admit the 
air, and the meat in warm weather is covered with a gauzy 
kind of canvas which excludes the flies. If you admiie 
a nice plant or bouquet, it is intimated that you can have 
it at a certain price, and the fish will be sold if you fanej 
any of them. Any articles you purchase are succeeded 
next morning by a fresh supply. One word, however, as 
to the Parisian butchers' shops. Never lodge yety near one, 
unless you are satisfied to lie awake from about four o'clock 
in the morning. The beasts are all slaughtered at the public 
*^ abattoirs,'' the carcasses are conveyed to the shops on 
strong and loudly-rattling carts. The work of cutting up, 
cleaving, sawing, chopping, then commences, and to sleep, 
within fifty yards of the place, is out of the question. 

The transition is natural from the butcher's stall to the 
poulterer and fishmonger. Their shops are far inferior in 
arrangement or appearanpe to those of the flesh vendors, 
but the fowls in France are uncommonly fine, which is 
ascribed to the feeding being finished with maize and 
milk. I would back Paris against London for a Christmas 
turkey or pair of fowl. Truffles are an addition seldom 
seen at our tables, but a splendid turkey would be con- 
sidered in France, a very ill-treated bird, if it went to the 
spit unaccompanied by the honors of a trufiie-stufliDg. 
I may here incidentally mention that I have seen flocks of 
turkeys at SU Germain en Laye^ and also in different parts 
of Normandy and Brittany, feeding eagerly on haws picked 
from the foot-stalks and crushed in wooden troughs. 
^htit numlieis of turkey & mi^bt b«& fed in Ireland by a. 

The Seine. 869 

similar process ! Fish, in Paris, is scarcely ever of first- 
rate quality, and it is always dear. They eat many kinds 
which we seldom touch. Carp, tench, and perch are fre-i 
quently to be seen at table, and the gudgeon is used to an 
extent calculated to siurprise a Dublin man, in the vicinity 
of whose city it is most abundant, but at whose repasts it 
is unknown. 


The Seine, which at Paris is a considerable river, not 
being affected by any tide, and also being protected from 
the access of such quantities of filth as are conveyed into 
the Liffey by our public sewers, presents always a dear/ 
and sometimes a limpid, appearance. The banks are a 
great school of practical patience. There may be seen 
numerous anglers watching the floats of their lines, and 
tranquilly awaiting the bite of some unwary member of 
the finny tribe, whilst hour^ are absorbed into past time^ 
but without pastime-^not even "one glorious nibble'* 
rewarding their perseverance, I have sauntered along the 
quays of Paris for an hour or two almost every day, and 
never saw but one capture, which was a small eel. The^ 
proprietor of the rod and line seemed very proud of his. 
solitary achievement, and it was evident that, he regarded 
it as an unusual occurrence. 

. Persons who rescue others from drowning at Paris re- 
ceive from some public fund, either police or municipal, a 
reward of twenty francs (16s. 8d.) I have been credibly; 
informed that it is not an infrequent arrangement between: 
two scamps, that one is to fall into the river, and then the 
other takes a heroic plunge, seizes the sinking victim, and- 
emulates the skill and courage of Cassius, when, " from* 
the waves of Tiber he bore the troubled Caesar." But the 
modem Cassius and CsBsar, if the reward is attained, de- 
vote it to a gastronomic sacrifice, and feast sumptuously 
on what was so nobly acquired. A young female on the. 
Quai Voltaire, having excited suspicion by falling too fre- 
quently into the river, was told that no reward would b^v 

870 Twenty Years^ EecoUections, 

given for any future salvage ; consequently the subsequent 
wettings of her garments were reserved for the washing 


Perhaps the most general taste in France, amongst aU 
classes and conditions of people, is for ornamental trees 
and flowers ; you see them everywhere. On the Boule- 
vards you find rows of the Oriental plane, acacia, horse- 
chestnut, hickory, catalpa, maple, and various other trees. 
Every nook or corner, not required for some industrial or 
domestic purpose, is planted. The yards of horse reposi- 
tories or forges have trees or scandent plants trained on 
the walls ; and in private residences, and the enclosures 
belonging to public offices, trees and flowers abound. 
Balconies and window-stools display boxes and flower- 
pots wherever the aspect is favorable; and even in 
northern aspects the hardy ivy is encouraged to push its 
verdant tendrils. In the palatial gardens and public 
parks, Flora appears to be not merely the presiding, but 
the monopolising deity. Great care is bestowed on the 
cultivation of those places ; but it is worthy of remark 
and imitation on the part of strangers, that where an enor- 
mous population have free access, without any distinction 
of age or class, no trespass is committed — the blossoms are 
unplucked, and the boughs unbroken. Flower shows are 
very frequent in Paris, and are always certain of attract- 
ing a numerous and fashionable assemblage. I have at- 
tended on many such occasions ; and my candid judgment 
of the gardens and horticultural exhibitions I have seen is, 
that profusion and mediocrity appear to be their leading 
characteristics. I can freely and fairly acknowledge that 
many of the choicest productions of our gardens, our best 
fruits and finest flowers, have been originally derived from 
France ; but our cultivation, whether of trees or plants, 
results in a decided superiority. However, I have seen a 
vast deal worthy of admiration in their horticulture, and 
I hope that speedy improvemen.t will attend their future 

A Pretty Thief. 371 

labors. I shall now close my horticultural remarks with 
a,n anecdote which I ascertained to be strictly true. 


In 1864 there was a show of fruits and flowers in the 
Rue de la Chaus^e-d'Antin, and the proprietor of a sub- 
urban nursery exhibited a collection of orchideSj grown and 
blown to perfection. One flower was of surpassing size 
and beauty, and was deservedly considered the gem of the 
exhibition. On the second day, a young woman of pre- 
possessing appearance, whose attire and manner indicated 
that she belonged to the industrial- class, appeared to be 
quite enchanted by the splendid orchis, and her enco- 
miums, and perhaps her good looks, attracted the attention 
of the exhibitor. He paid her some gallant compliments, 
and ventured to inquire her name. 

" Monsieur, it is in the catalogue." 

'* Then, Mademoiselle, it must be ' Rose ; ' you are in- 
deed worthy of the same designation as the pride of our 

" Monsieur is right in his conjectures as to my name, 
but he is mistaken in the comparison by which he compli- 
ments me so greatly." 

**May I presume, to ask where Mademoiselle resides?" 

" I live, Monseiur in the Rue d' Amsterdam, No. — ." 

'^ I indulge the pleasing hope that Mademoiselle may 
permit me to have the honour of calling on her." 

'* Monsieur confers a great honour on me, I shall have 
much pleasure in receiving his visit." 

The horticulturist became completely enamoured ; he 
redoubled his compliments, and eventually requested 
Mademoiselle to remain in care of his flowers whilst he 
procured some ice and other delicacies for her refection. 
When he returned. Rose had disappeared, and with her 
his magnificent orchis had departed. The plant remained, 
but the stem was severed near the root, and the display of 
its loveliness was adjourned for at least twelve months. 
Furiously indignant^ he denounced the ^letX^ ^iJ^^^j^ 4k ^ 

872 Twenty Years' Recollections. 

thief. Proceeding quickly to the Rue d' Amsterdam, h 
found ^hat the numbers of the houses stopped short bj 
one of the number mentioned by her. He was despoiled, 
and had no available remedy. Towards the close of the 
next day, he was contemplating his stand, lamenting the 
loss of its greatest attraction, and recounting to his sympa; 
thising friends the circumstances of the spoliation, when i 
box and a note were delivered to him by a porter, who 
had been employed to convey them from a neighbouring 
street. The note was as follows : — 


'* Ton displayed too great a temptation to an ardent admirer 
of beantifal flowers. From the moment I beheld joar orchis I 
determined that its artificial reproduction should not fall to the lot 
of any rival artiste. In the accompanying box yoa may behold 
yonr flower ; and if yon place it upon the stem, it will not wither 
for a considerable time. Receive, Monsieur, the assurance of my 
lasting respect and gratitude. 

" KOSB." 

The box contained an artificial orchis, so exactly resem- 
bling the stolen flower, that it would deceive the closest 
observer. It was placed upon the stand, and passed off 
admirably. The fair delinquent was not detected — indeed 
the search for her was not rigorously pursued — but copies 
of the abstracted orchis gained a general and deserved 
pre-eminence amongst the artificial flowers which graced 
the fashionable female dresses of the succeeding season. 

FBENCii wrr. 

Some of the lighter literary productions of the French 
press afford to a reader abundant instances of pithy and 
witty expressions. A stranger who has not been habi- 
tuated to the language, and accustomed to think in it as 
well as to speak it, will be very likely to allow many 
sparkles of conversational wit to escape his notice, and may 
iBonsequently impute more dulness to the social ciivsle in 
which he mingles than he is justified in ascribing. I am 
£acft that many ebuUitioiis of ^eaius totally escaped my 

French Silver. 87S 

observation, but I recollect an expression addressed to me 
by a cab-driver which I cannot omit relating. I had walked 
down the Rue St. Florentine towards the Place de la Con- 
corde, when in turning the corner at which I had arrived, 
the driver accidentally let his whip fall. It lay just at my 
feet, I took it up and handed it to the owner, who res- 
pectfully touched his hat and said, "I thank you, sir; I 
hope that whenever misfortune (inalheur) meets you, he'll 
lose his whip." 


I often thought, during my Parisian sojourn, that the 
instability of human dynasties was strongly evidenced by 
a handful of French silver, a coinage which has been left 
to public currency from the end of the last century. I 
met with coins of the old Republic, of Bonaparte, First 
.Consul ; Napoleon, Emperor ; Louis XVIII., Charles X., 
Louis Philippe, the French Republics apain, and Napoleon 
III. The silver coins of the Republic immediately pre-, 
ceding the last empire, have on the obverse, '*Libertd 
Egalite. Fraternity." I remarked to a shopkeeper in the 
Rue de Bac, that it was very strange the Imperial govern- 
ment left the coin of the Republic still in circulation. He 
took up a five-franc piece, and said, " Liberie point, Egalite 
point, Fratemite point," The forcible wit of his expression 
consisted in the double meaning which may be assigned 
to ^^poiat,'^ It signifies a full stop or period, but taken as 
an adverb, it may be understood to denote *' Liberty, not 
at all ; Equality, not at all ; Fraternity, not at all." 


There is no institution more worthy of a visit from a 
tourist than the Hotel des Invalides at Paris. An addi- 
tional interest has been imparted to it since the remains 
of the first Napoleon have been deposited in a magnificent 
mausoleum immediately adjoining. In the front of the 
building, ranged along the terrace, and also ovl \,\«k ^as^»c& 

S74 Twenty Veari Recollections. 

and western sides, were a considerable nnmber of canDon, 
captured in war. I saw guns of Russian, Chinese, Dutch, 
Austrian, Prussian, and Moorish origin ; but amongst 
them all I do not believe that the English artillery wo^ 
find an old acquaintance. When you enter the chorch, 
your attention is immediately arrested by the flags of 
various nations pendant from the walls to your right and 
left, and placed there as captured trophies. On the left 
hangs an English flag. I asked, on four different occa- 
sions, and of diflcrent persons, where this color had been 
taken. The invariable reply was "Leipsic." I thought 
this very extraordinary, having always supposed that no 
English were at Leipsic, except a troop of the Socket 
Brigade, and certainly they did not carry a color. 

The Hotel des Invalides was under the direction of the 
Minister of War ; and in the library of the War Office 
I have seen several rolls and registries of its former in- 
mates. In such as relate to the period between 1700 and 
1775, Irish names are not infrequent; Byrne, Biyan, 
Carty, Cavanagh, Dunne, Delany, Keogh, Kelly, Corcoran, 
Quin, Purcell, Redmond, Sullivan, &c., appear to attest 
the services and suflerings of the Irish Brigade. There 
are not many '^ O V ; and I am incHned to believe that 
in several instances that prefix was laid aside purposely. 
Scotch names occur, but not at all in such frequency as 
Irish. Of the occupiers of this splendid military asylum, 
I can safely affirm that I found them extremely civil, and 
by no means reserved in their communications. They 
were proud of their Institution and of the profession with 
which it was connected ; but their conversations exhibited 
the human character in some thoroughly prejudiced phases. 
I did not meet amongst the veterans even one individual 
who had served under '* The Emperor," and only three or 
four who had ever seen him ; but all were well versed in 
the traditions of his military achievements. I had become 
intimate with Monsieur Turpin, the librarian of the War 
Office, who understood English perfectly, and he appeared 
to enjoy, as much as I did, frequent visits to the Invalides, 
Bad the peculiar feelings oi aentlments expressed by the 

The Hotel dee Invalidea. 875 

old soldiers, especially regarding the policy adopted by 
Napoleon, and the political and military operations to 
which he had recourse for the extension of French power 
throughout the world. It was almost an article of faith 
amongst them, that Napoleon was never conquered by any 
of his numerous adversaries. They could not admit that 
he ever committed a military mistake, or was guilty of a 
moral wrong. In Russia, he was repelled by the frost and 
snow. At Leipsic he suffered a reverse by the premature 
explosion of a mine. At Waterloo he was sold. At Paris 
he was betrayed. It was politically expedient for Napoleon 
to imprison Ferdinand of Spain, when he entered France 
as a suitor for the hand of his sister, Pauline ; but it was 
infamous to send Napoleon to St. Helena. It was a noble 
idea for Napoleon to collect the choicest works of art from 
every capital on the Continent into the museum of the 
Louvre ; but that their original owners shoald take them 
back was robbery. It was glorious to recollect that the 
victorious eagle of France had triumphantly entered 
Madrid, Lisbon, Berlin, Bome, Vienna, "Milan, Naples, 
Munich, Venice, Hamburg, and Moscow ; but that the 
European powers should ever think of returning the visit 
— that the Bussians should have threatened to shell Paris 
from the heights of Montmartre — that the Prussians 
should have encamped in the Bois de Boulogne, and the 
English in the Champs Elys^es, was a degradation, an in- 
sult never to be forgotten nor forgiven. After all, per- 
haps, these Frenchmen are fair specimens of human vanity, 
of human resentments, and only think and speak as we 
would think and speak if we had, like them, to revert to a 
series of astonishing military successes terminating in our 
complete discomfiture* 

^7& Twenty Year^ Recc^ctums* 





When a stranger surveys the military asylum for the 
maimed or aged soldiers — when he beholds the triumphal 
arch (rare de V Etoile) at the higher termination of the 
Champs £ly8ees, erected at the almost incredible cost of 
£417,812, to commemorate the achievements of the French 
armies- — when he contemplates the column in the Place 
Vendome, towering to the height of 136 feet, and cased 
with bas reliefs, of which 360,000 pounds weight of cap* 
tured cannon supplied the material — when he observes 
large and frequent bodies of troops marching with beat of 
drum to various posts-— when he finds it impossible to 
glance at any crowded street, or enter any place of public 
resort or recreation, without beholding the uniforms of, 
perhaps, every branch of the service, he is almost forced 
to the conclusion that the bent of the French disposition, 
and the genius of the nation, is essentially military. How'- 
ever, I believe that an observant and reflecting mind will 
notice many points in the French character of an unmili- 
tary tendency. Whenever a campaign or expedition be* 
comes the subject of conversation in a French circle, the 
first consideration is, How much will it cost, and what 
shall we gain ? Solferino and Magenta are prized more 
as having annexed Nice, than for the laurels they con- 
ferred on French valor. I frequently visited the triumphal 
arch to which I have already adverted ; and on one occa^ 
sion I was struck by the remark of a Frenchman in refer- 
ence to the enormous sum it cost, and also to the surprising 
fact, that although the names of more than ninety victories 
are inscribed on its interior walls, not one of those jdacts 
was then in the possession of the victorious power. 

Curious Inscription. 877 


On the 15th of August, 1864, the birth day of the first 
Napoleon, the f^te of the Bonaparte family was celebrated 
by various public demonstrations. The rails surrounding 
the base of the column in the Place Vendome were deco* 
rated with violet-colored ribbons and wreaths of Immor- 
telles. Amongst them I observed a large oval tablet richly 
"bordered, and bearing an inscription in Italian, which I 
transcribe and translate, leaving its applicability to the 
character of the first Napoleon to the calm and dispassion- 
ate judgment of all acquainted with the history of Europe 
from the time of his appearance at the siege of Toulon to 
the subversion of his power at Waterloo-— 

" A Te, essere 11 pia maraviglioso della creazione, 11 cielo con- 
ceda quella pace che ti nego la malvagita degli uomini.** 

"To you, the most wonderful being of the creation, heaven 
grants that peace which the waywardness of mankind denied 


Gambling houses, formerly so perniciously abundant 
in Paris, have been rigorously suppressed by the govern- 
ment for a considerable time past. High play is carried 
on still in various phases of society, but as it is furtive 
and illicit, its dupes and victims are very limited compared 
with the thousands who were ruined when the vice was 
tolerated by the public authorities. The Palais Royal was, 
about forty years ago, the head-quarters of Parisian gam- 
ing, and every season produced a crop of suicides. The 
usual course was for the ruined gamester to pledge or sell 
his watch or trinkets, buy a pistol at a gunmaker's shop 
in the piazza, charge it, cross the rails into the parterre, 
and blow out his brains ; but such incidents did not stop 
the play ; they merely produced a few shrugs of the 
shoulders, and the observation, " His game is up." 

There is an old gentleman in Dublin who t^svdsA %Rk 

378 Twenty Years^ EecolUcUons. 

near my house that I see him almost every day. About 
the time to which I refer, he was in the confidentiai em- 
ployment of a most respectable firm of solicitors, and one 
morning he was apprised by the senior partner that it was 
intended to send him to Paris, to have certain deeds 
executed. He was to be allowed liberally for his expenses, 
and to be permitted, as a reward for his previous good 
conduct, to spend ten days or a fortnight in the French 
metropolis. He arrived in Paris at night, arose early next 
morning, and betook himself at once to the business with 
which he was entrusted. He was so fortunate as to find 
all the required parties, and in a few hours had all the 
deeds perfected. He then went off in quest of amuse- 
ment, and having met an acquaintance, was ultimately 
brought to the Palais Royal, and entered one of the prindr 
pal gaming-houses. He looked on for a while, and then 
ventured a stake of a few gold pieces ; he won, tried 
again, and was successful. He continued to play vKth 
such good fortune, that at the termination of the sitting, 
he had won upwards of one thousand pounds. He went 
to his hotel, took some rest, paid his bill, and set off with 
all haste for Dublin. His employers were surprised at his 
speedy return, and he told them what had occurred, add- 
ing that he would not trust himself another night in Paris. 
His was a solitary instance of good luck and prudence; 
for with thousands of others a similar gain would have 
only been the precursor of final and irretrievable ruin. 


At the suggestion of an intimate friend, who was in 
Paris during the time of my residence there, I shall men- 
tion an incident of an extraordinary and very disagreeable 
nature, arising entirely from an expression used by me 
to a young woman possessed of considerable personal 
attractions, but also having a most fearful and ungovern- 
able temper, without the least intention on mj part to 
excite her feelings. 1 went into a shop in the Champs 
ElysieSj to purchase some sUlionery, snufi\ postage stamps, 

French Charity. 879 

&c., and was supplied by the young woman, to whom I 
handed a twenty franc gold piece fi)r her to take four 
francs and give me the change. Belgium silver coins were 
at the time very freely circulated ; but Swiss silver was 
considered to be alloyed most unreasonably, and when 
recognised was invariably rejected. The damsel gave me 
eight pieces, each of two francs, and I observed that on 
two of them the Helvetian or Swiss designation was im- 
pressed. I immediately remarked that Mademoiselle 
had been subjected to a Swiss deception, {une tromperie 
Suisse,) when she exclaimed, " Accursed Englishman, you 
are a liar," at the same time throwing a heavy canister at 
me, knocking off my hat, and following up that hostile 
proceeding by flinging a flask of oil in the same direction. 
The latter did not strike me, but broke a large square of 
glass in a side window looking into the Rue de TOratoire. 
Her brother-in-law, who was proprietor of the concern, 
seized her, and prevented any further violence ; but the 
abusive language continued for some minutes. Finally I 
sutceeded in getting the Swiss silver replaced by two 
pieces of French coinage, and left after declaring my 
intention to prosecute my assailant. The proprietor con- 
tented himself by declaring that the affair was a mere 
'* mistake ; " and he certainly seemed more annoyed by 
having his window smashed than by the misconduct 
evinced towards me. Subsequently I was informed that 
the young woman had been engaged in some courtship or 
amatory correspondence with a Swiss, who had terminated 
the affair by an abrupt departure without any previous 
notice. The angry damsel referred my expression, not to 
the money, but to the man, and 1 relinquished any attempt 
to make her responsible for the treatment I had received 
in consequence of her hasty '* mistake.*' 


In the foregoing observations I have not hesitated to 
refer to some faults, vanities, and unreasonable expecta- 
tions which attracted my attention during my ie&idAx\s.<&\:s^ 

880 Twenty Tears' Recollections, 

Paris. I shall now offer a few remarks and a little narra- 
tive connected with one of the noblest virtues that can 
elevate and adorn human nature, and which I believe to 
exist in the French character to a degree far beyond what 
would be imagined by the travellers whose brief visits 
enable them to take only transient or superficial views of 
French society. There is no civilized nation more charit- 
able than the French. They have no legalised and estab- 
lished system of poor laws, but their cities abound with 
benevolent institutions, and the requirements of helpless 
age or unprotected infancy are never disregarded. There 
is no lack of charity in any class— even the rag-pickers 
will share their slender means in alleviating human suffer- 
ing. Amongst the more affluent there is very little medio- 
crity of religious feeling ; they are generally devout or 
indifferent, but very few are uncharitable. The means of 
relief for the suffering of indigence are almost always ad- 
ministered through religious agencies ; and the mercy that 
is manifested in a generous and unostentatious succour of 
the poor, exemplifies very frequently the words of Shakes- 
peare — 

" It blesseth him that gives and him that takes.** 

For many of those who were indifferent to religion, but 
disposed to charity, have been themselves caught, reformed, 
and reconciled through the energies which they employed 
for relieving the necessities of others. 


Connected with the subject of French charity, I shall 
introduce the narrative of an incident of 1 864, and 1 had 
several interviews and conversations of a very agreeable 
nature with the little heroine of the tale. 

In one of the small old streets which adjoin the market 
of St. Honore, upon the upper floor of a house built some 
centuries ago, the family of a poor workman were struck 
by a most fearful affliction. Not only had the wife been 
unable to rise from a bed of sickness for a considerable 
ti/ne, but the husband, the ouly su^ijort of her five chil- 

^ A Letter to Heaven, 381 

dren, haH, by a sudden accident, been so disabled as to be 
stretched in utter helplessness and acute suffering. What 
was to be done ? Where were the helpless creatures to 
find subsistence? 

Amongst the children of this hapless couple there was 
a little blue-eyed, fair complexioned girl ; she was lively, 
intelligent, and interesting, and had been for a short time 
attending a public school ; but now she was obliged to 
remain at home to give her puny care to her sick parents. 
Afflicted by the misfortune of her father, and assailed 
even by hunger, she instinctively sought a remedy. 

*' When you are in trouble you should apply to the 
Good God ; the sister at the school tells us so. Well, I 
shall address the Good God. I shall write a nice letter, 
such as my mother made me write to my godmother last 
Sunday. I have a bit of paper and a pen," 

No sooner said than done. Whilst her parents are in 
an uneasy slumber, she scribbles a note abounding in 
blots, in which she implores of the Good God to restore 
their health, and to send some bread for her little brothers 
and herself. Then she slips out, runs at once to Saint- 
Koch, and supposing that the alms-box for the poor was 
the letter-box of the Good God, she approached it with 
timidity, and in the hope that she was not seen. 

At this moment an aged and respectable lady was leav- 
ing the church. She was behind the little girl, and seeing 
her approach the alms-box stealthily, and supposing her 
actuated by some culpable motive, she caught hold of her 

" What are you doing, you unfortunate child ? " 

The little girl, surprised and affrighted, cast down her 
streaming eyes, but being kindly and mildly questioned by 
the lady, she recounted her sad story, and showed the 
letter which she wished to send to heaven. 

The good lady, moved with compassion, consoled the 
poor child, and taking the paper, said — 

" Leave me your letter ; 1 take upon myself to forward 
it to its destination." 

Then she immediately added, "But have you-^ut^ovut. 
address, to receive the answer?" 

382 Twenty Years^ Recollection^ 

The child, who looked upon the lady with the utmost 
astonishment, answered, '* No, Madam ; but the sister at 
my school tells us that the Good God knows everything.'' 

^' And she has told you the truth, my child " said the 
lady, smiling ; *' but those whom He may charge to de- 
liver the answer may not know as well as He does." 

The child then stated where her poor parents lived, re- 
ceived two francs from the lady, and with a joyous heart 
betook herself back to the wretched garret. 

In the morning she found at her door a large hamper 
containing clothes, provisions, and some money. A label 
was affixed, inscribed, " The answer of the Good God." 

A gentleman named McCarthy, eminent for his medical 
skill, and also much respected for his generous and bene- 
volent disposition, soon after, at the instance of the chari- 
table lady, visited the poor sufferers. He was one of 
those Irishmen whose talents and worth attained to high 
professional positions in Paris. He speedily cured the 
man, and considerably alleviated the sufferings of the 
woman. He allowed me to accompany him two or three 
times whilst attending the humble denizens of the garret, 
from whence charity had removed misery and despair, 
and on those occasions I found the little girl fully con- 
vinced and most earnestly insisting, that the answer of 
the Good God must have been brought by one of Hia 
angels. * 



I HAD, during my residence in Paris, the supreme grati- 
fication of being honored with the intimacy of the Rev. 
Francis Mahony, whose nom de plume of " Father Prout" 
is suggestive of a complete union of learning, wit, and 
poetic power, without the slightest alloy of pedantry, 
acerhityj or vanity. I was a very frequent visitor at his 
apartmeats in the Rue de ^o>3X\\i) «2Ci^ ^^ ii^-^^x denied 

Father Prout. 383 

admission. If he was writing, I did not accost him, but 
sat down, taking up a newspaper or book, and remaining 
silent until he found himself at leisure either to chat at 
home, or to saunter out through the parks or gardens, 
museums or libraries, I repeatedly thanked him for the 
unrestricted access thus granted, and his invariable reply 
was, " Come whenever you please, you never interrupt 
me.*' He was the correspondent of a London evening 
paper, 7'he Globe and Traveller^ and I do not think that 
he relished the occupation, for his conversation scarcely 
ever indicated a political tendency, and I never knew him 
to introduce a topic involving political or religious differ- 
ences. At the time to which 1 refer, the war was raging 
between the northern and southern states of America; 
and the only opinion that I ever heard Father Mahony 
express on the subject was not favorable to the cause of 
either side as regarded its merits, but to the effect, that 
whatever might be the issue of the contest, the belligerent 
states would never become again tmited in firm and 
enduring friendship. He formed this conclusion from the 
deadly hatred and vengeful denunciations evinced by great 
numbers of Americans of both parties who were then in 
Paris, and amongst whom the females were the most im- 
compromising and persistently truculent in their expres- 
sions. It remains for time to confirm or confute his pre- 
diction ; I pass to one or two anecdotes of this gifted and 
amiable individual, which I hope my readers will consider 
interesting. I had made an appointment with him to 
have a ramble in the French capital, or its environs, and 
twelve o'clock was the hour fixed for its commencement. 
Some unforeseen circumstances, however, delayed my ar- 
rival at his residence until another hour had nearly 
elapsed. When I apologised for my failure in punctuality, 
Father Mahony said that he had employed the interval in 
jotting down suggestions as to the direction which our 
proposed saunter might take, for my consideration and 
decision. They are as follow : — 

384 Twenty Tears* RecoUectionfim 

To the Bois de Boulogne shall we wander to-daj, 
Or y'mt the tomb where Napoleon reposes, 

Or ascend Notre Dame, from its tow'rs to survey 
The scene unsurpass'd which that prospect discloses? 

From Boulevards crowded our steps may diverge. 
If we wish at the Bourse* to see bright or long faces, 

As some babbles rise, or as others may merge 
In the vortex where Hope vainly looks for their traces. 

Shall we seek the Pantheon^s vast edifice, where 
An echo to thunder converts every sound, 

From vaults t in whose precincts the bones of Voltaire 
Were so carefully stow'd that they cannot be found? 

Or the Luxemburg Palace, with gardens, whero grow 
The roses so varied, throughout the whole year ; 

And you see on each side stained queens in a row, 
Their costumes antique looking cold and severe ? 

To the Louvre*8 magnificent halls shall we hie, 

Where art's choicest gems require days to explore them ; 

Where dynasties paHt seem around us to lie, 

W hilst emblems Imperial are triumphing o*er them ? 

Shall we visit St Cloud, and continue our conrse 
To Versailles, where a palace exemplifies all 

That monarchical pride from its serfs could enforce. 
Till their patience exhausted accomplished its fail ? 

If at Sevres we pause to admire for awhile 

Its plastic productions of classical taste, 
We shall see the sole work that the Pompadonr's smile 

Ever sanctioned that was not impure and debased. 

Wo should not forget St, Germain, and its claims 
On a stranger's attention ♦ • • 

♦ The Parisian Stock Exchange. 

. t The door of .this vault, when clapped, produces a noise folly 
equal to the report of a heavy cftnnon. The general opinion is,* 
that the bones of Voltaire were abstracted and burnt, soon after 
the restoration of Louis the Eighteenth. 

Father Prout. 885 

The last place mentioned in this unfinished production 
was chosen ; and after viewing the tomb of James the 
Second of England, the church, to the vaults of which 
the mortal remains of many French monarchs had been 
consigned, the old palace, and the exquisitely beautiful 
scenery of its vicinity, I prevailed on my estimable friend 
to become my only gueajt at the Prince of Wales* (Le 
Prince de GaUes) Hotel and Tavern, where we had what 
he designated *'a sumptuous dinner," the entire charge 
for which was defrayed by seven francs (53. lOd.) How 
sumptuous ! 

During another strciU I happened to express very great 
admiration of the poetic productions of Gray ; and in 
reference to his " Elegy written in a country churchyard," 
ventured to term it the finest composition of the elegiac 
class in the English language. Father Mahony praised it 
highly, but disagreed as to its merits being superior to 
every other production of the kind. He then stated that 
about the middle of the last century, a native of Dublin, 
named John Cunningham, who was a comic actor, pub- 
lished a volume of poems, and dedicated them to David 
Garrick. They were chiefiy pastoral, but amongst them 
was "An Elegy on a pile of Ruins," composed, he 
believed, on Rosslyn Abbey and Rosslyn Castle ; and he 
then repeated several verses which he considered very 
beautiful, and which he declared to be equal, in his esti- 
mation, to the poetic merits of Gray's Elegy. I asked if 
he could lend me the work, and he replied that he had 
never seen it except at a public library in Cork. Soon 
after my return to Dublin I saw on a bookstand at Aston's 
Quay, a copy, which I purchased for a shilling, and thus 
became enabled to quote the verses to which my very 
learned friend ascribed snch excellence. They are ex- 
tremely alliterative— 

In the full prospect yonder hill commands, 
O'er barren heaths and cultivated plains ; 

The vestige of an ancient abbey stands, 
Close by a rain'd castle's rude remains. 

386 Twenty Year^ Beeollections. 

Half buried, tbera, lie many a broken baet, 
And obelisk, aad aim, overthrown by Time $ 

And many a cherubt there, descends ia dnst 
From the rent roof, and portico sublime. 

Where reverend shrines in Gothic grandenr stood, 
The nettle, or the noxious night-shade, apreada; 

And aahUngs, wahed from tba neighboufing wood, 
Through the worn turrets wav^ dieiv tt^oibli^g heads. 

There CoDte^^)lation, to the crowd ooiknown. 
Her attitude composed, and aspect sweet I 

Sits musing on a monumental stone, 
And points to the mbmbnto at her feet. 

Boon as sage evening cbeck'd day^ annny pride^ 
I left the mantling shade,, in moral mood i 

And seated by the maid's scqaesterM aicie^ 
Pensive, the mouldering monuments I iaew*d. 

Inexorably ealm, with silent pace 

Here TiMB has passed— What ruin marks his wayi 
This pile, now crumbling o*er its haUow*d base, 

Xurn'd not his step,, aor could his oouqsQ delajs. 

Religion raised her supplicating eyes 
In vain; and Melody, her song sublin^e : 

In vain, Philosophy with maxims wise,. 
Would touch the cold unfeeling heart o^ Tucb. 

Yet the hoar tyrant, iho* not moved to spare,, 
Relented when he struck its finish*df pr^e ; 

^nd partly the rude ravage to repair, 
Tbe tottVing tow'rs with twisted Ivy Ued? 

The eight verses which- 1 have quoted fVoin ** An Elegy 
OQ a Pile of Ruins^" are not consecuth^ in that prodoo* 
tion. It may appear extraordinary that Father- Mahonj 
should make such long quotations with perfect correct- 
ness, but to those who knew him a misquotation (^ 
deficiency of reQoUection on his part would seem far more 

A Frmdk Land Murder. 387 



Whilst sojourning in Piaris I became acquainted with an 
avocaty named Vanneau, who practised in a provincial 
district, and who came to stay, for a few days, at the 
boarding-house in the Hue de I'Oratoire in which I was 
located. He had been recently engaged in defending 
persons charged with criminal acts, and narrated a case 
by which it appeared that Ireland had not a monopoly of 
land murders. A. M. Deneubourg had purchased, at 
Cambray, a piece of land near Ewars, occupied by a 
farmer, named Potiez, who had offered for the property, 
but, was outbid by Deneubourg. In the evening of the 
day of sale, the two men, on their way home, met at a 
house of entertainment at Ramillies, and some very angry 
language passed between them. They left the house, and 
in some time Potiez returned to Ramillies, and stated that 
they had been attacked on the load, that he had saved 
himself by flight, but he feared Deneubourg had been 
murdered by the villains who had assailed them. On 
proceeding to the place described, Deneubourg was found 
fiorribly murdered. His head was smashed to small pieces, 
and to a club which was found near the body a portion of 
his brains and two of his teeth were adhering. There were 
no footprints on the soft ground except what corresponded 
to the shoes of the deceased or of Potiez, and the dress of 
the latter was marked with blood. Various other circum- 
stances fully indicated the guilt of Potiez. He was con- 
victed, but was not sentenced to death. The French jury 
found him guilty of the murder, under attenuating circunh 
stances. I asked Monsieur Yanneau what attenuating 
circumstances could the jury discover in so brutal a 
murder, and he gravely replied that they thought ^"Ql 
accepted offer for the purchase of tVi^i "|^io^xVj^aM>SsA^\as^ 

388 Twenty Years' Recollections. 

that of the occupying tenant, was a very strong provoca- 
tion and a natural incitement to revenge. He then added 
that Potiez was fortunate in being tried by a jury on 
which there was not a landed proprietor or an auctioneer, 


I met in Paris with some Irishmen holding ecclesiastical 
appointments there, and I gratefully recollect their kind 
and hospitable attentions. One of them, Fere M'Ardle, 
was attached to the Church of St. Sulpice, which was 
much frequented by Irish, English, and American Koman 
Catholics. His duties consisted in the celebration of Mas!<, 
hearing confessions, visiting the sick, &c. ; but he never 
preached, the pulpit being reserved for clergymen who 
could deliver sermons in French with the ease and flaencj 
incident to their native language. The side aisles of the 
church were appropriated to persons of respectable appear- 
ance, who were expected to pay six sous for each chjur 
provided for their accommodation. The chairs were under 
the management of some female attendants, who were 
most persistent in collecting the chair-rent. On Whitsun- 
day, 1864, a soldier entered one of the aisles and took 
possession of a chair, without the intention, and probably 
without the means, of paying for its use. He was imme* 
diately required to pay the usual charge, or to leave the 
aisle and join the general crowd in the centre, and he 
obstinately refused to adopt either course. Whilst the 
altercation was proceeding, the Cur^ of St. Sulpice had 
entered from the street, and was passing quietly to the 
sacristy to make the necessary arrangements for preaching 
the sermon. He touched the soldier gently on the shoulder, 
and whispered, *' My friend, pay her trifling demand ; here 
is what will enable you to procure the same acconmioda- 
tion for a considerable time.'* Slipping a five-franc piece 
into the soldier*s hand, be passed on and discharged the 
duty which he had undertaken. On the next Sunday, 
(Trinity,^ the Cur^ was confined to bed by a severe attadc 
of bronchitis, and anolVi^i ^^cVt^iati^xi^ ^Y^«:ked^ and after- 

Algerian Productions, 389 

wards went to the apartment of the invalid to afford his 
sympathy and express hopes of a speedy recovery. The 
Cure almost immediately asked him if he bad observed a 
soldier amongst the congregation, to which the other 
replied that there were more than a dozen soldiers listen- 
ing to the sermon, and they subsequently came to the 
sacristy, where, on being asked what they required, they 
replied, "Only the money." On being told that there 
was no money for them, they expressed Some anger and 
great disappointment, as they had been led to believe by a 
comrade that they would get five frartcs each. 

On one occasion 1 was a spectator of a procession of 
French bishops from the College of St. Sulpice to the 
church. Amongst them there was one Irishman, Mon- 
seigneur Cruise ; he was the Bishop of Marseilles. 


From the abundance and variety of Algerian produc- 
tions which I beheld in the Parisian markets, it appeared 
to me that the country from which they were supplied 
possessed great capability of soil and climate, and received 
a high degree of cultivation. The finest Muscat grapes, 
both as to size and flavor, melons, pomegranates, shad- 
docks, and all the lesser varieties of the citron tribe, 
almonds, brinjals, sweet potatoes, and what was a very 
novel sight to an Irish eye in October, splendid straw- 
berries, met my view in several shops entirely appropriated 
to the sale of Algerian commodities. I confidently hope 
that French enterprise will be eventually far more success- 
ful in Africa than it was on the other side of the Atlantic. 
Few of the most valuable productions of the West Indies 
are indigenous. They were first introduced by the French 
into St. Domingo, and that island was the first to escape 
from European ownership. When the sugar-cane was 
brought from Egypt, the coffee bush from Arabia, and 
luscious fruits and stimulating spices from various lands^ 
the negro was imported from Africa, to be eventually th^ 
master of all. However, the stain of slavery dic^^^ \!i5aK> 

890 Twenty Yeati Recollections. 

attach to the French role in Algeria, and from all that I 
was able to learn of their government thecre, I know no 
reason why all who are desirous of the substitution of 
civilization instead of piracy and tyranny ahoold not wish 
it to be permanently succe»sfuL 


In closing my Parisian recollections, I wish to notice 
what was termed " Bird Charming'' in the gardens of the 
Tuileries. Theie was a silly notion amongst some people 
there that by the agency of animal magnetism, or by some 
peculiar power, the feathered tenants of the woods and 
shrubberies of the palace became familiar with particular 
persons, and the subject was specially mentioned in Le 
Monde Uluetre. It was certainly very curious to see the 
sparrows flocking about a person, eating from his hand, 
and perching on his hat, in expectation of the crumbs 
which he was distributing ; but it was far more -extraordi- 
nary to see the woodquest (ie pigeon sauvage) come from 
his lofty nest, alight at your feet, then perch on an ad- 
joining rail, and pick the crumbs from between your fingers. 
Still the "charming" was a misconception. The birds 
were in a place where they felt secure; they were not 
shot at or frightened, but they were petted and fed, and 
accordingly became familiar. I had no magnetic or mes- 
meric influence, but I had some nice bread, and they came 
down and eat from my hand, and some sparrows even 
took morsels from between my lips. Le Monde lUustn 
noticed two occasions on two consecutive days, when the 
birds were plentifully fed, and their feeders were described 
in terms, of which the following is a very literal transla»> 
tion : — 

" A young man of genteel demeanor, his head uncovered 
and slightly thrown back, called the birds, which came 
fluttering around him, and took, even from between his 
lips, the morsels of bread which he offered them. We 
wished to discover the secret of this curious proceeding, 
and returned at the same hour on the following day. We 



BrittevM/. 391 

experienced a great disap|K)intme^t ; for, ibstead of a man. 
young and prepossessing, we beheld ' a chatmer/ old and 
iorinMed^ no aparhte in his et/A, no es^presaion to his loekSk 
He began by throwing Into the litde railed arbonirs soiae. 
morsels, quickly deFoured by the bold sparrows. Then^' 
having gradually attracted them, he kept in his haftid a 
further supply of bread, and from the thickets of skrubs^ 
and from the surrounding trees, finally from all quarters 
of the garden, birds of various species came flocking and 
fluttering around hun. Attaining to a degree of crescendo 
between him and his feathered guests^ he flnished by 
having them perched on his dioulders, and picking the 
crumbs from between his lips." 

Who could the individual have been, thus designated as 
old, wrinkled, unsparkling, and inei^res^ive ? Oh I I hop9 
that none <d my readers will suppose or suspect that such- 
terms were applied to me. I should prefer being con- 
sidered '' a young man of genteel demeanor," but if the 
other description appears more suitable or probablei then 
•— ^* What can't be cured must be endured/' 


I left the French capital after a very agreeable rosideaee 
of eighteen months, and, previous to returning to my 
native city, availed myself of an invitation from a kind and 
hospitable friend to pass a month with him at a delightful 
villa in Brittany, about a couple of miles from St. Malo* 
Amongst the people of this locality, I observed a vast dis- 
similitude to the corresponding classes in Paris. Display, 
and the excitement incident to the metropolitan require^* 
ments of frequent and varied amusements, appeared to 
have very slight attractions for the Bretons, whose pursuits 
and habits were mostly directed to the acquisition and 
ei\joyment of public advantages and domestic <K)mforts« 
Their soil did not appear to me to be superior to the gene- 
rality of that which I have seen in the southern half of 
Ireland ; nor did I consider their climate more genial dur^ 
ing the time of my visit, which comprised the latter half 

392 Twenty Years* Eecollecfions. 

of August and the next half of September. Their exports 
of orchard fruits, butter, eggs, and poultiy, from t)ie port 
of 8t« Malo, were enormous in quantity, and, I believe, 
unexceptionable in quality. The external appearance of 
their firkins and other packages was extremely neat and 
cleanly, and the butter was liable to inspection previous to 
its shipment. I was informed by the English Consul that 
the exportation of butter amounted in the year to twenty- 
five thousand firkins, and the fowls exceeded one million. 
On the lands which I had opportunities of viewing in Brit- 
tany, I saw very large crops of rape, the seed of which was 
intended to be crushed for the production of oil, and I have 
been in three concerns where the rape oil was filtered 
through charcoal, and thus clarified and qualified for our 
use as *' Colza oil." Buckwheat {ble notr) is considered a 
valuable crop, and is much used for feeding poultry. The 
sugar-beet (betterave jaune) is often to be seen, but is gene- 
rally mistaken by strangers for mangold wurtiiel. But the 
most extraordinary production is one which we ooidd cul- 
tivate fully as well and as profitably as the Bretons can, 
if we were permitted on any terms. I have seen many 
acres, even on one farm, thickly covered with tobacco 
growing most luxuriantly. Why cannot we see it on the 
Irish soil ? Why is it utterly prohibited here ? 

During the wars of the French Revolution and of the 
first empire, St. Malo was a port almost exclusively appro^ 
priated to the outfit and employment of privateers. Few 
of their cruises were eminently successful ; but the greatest 
prize stated to have been acquired was a large ship, be- 
longing to the English East India Company, which was 
captured in very foggy weather between Jersey and South- 
ampton. The cargo consisted of the choicest Indian pro- 
duce, and there was also a very large amount of specie on 
board. This affair realized an ample fortune for the pro- 
prietor of the privateer, who retired from any further 
speculation in or connection with maritime operations, 
whether forcible or otherwise, and invested his gains in 
the purchase of a fine estate in the vicinity of St. Halo, 
During my visit 1 was al ^e\^T«X ^<5W^v.^\il^utertainment« 


Brittany. 393 

given by families with whom my friend was on intimate 
terms ; and, at one, in St. Servan, a conversation arose 
relative to the great injury inflicted on the commercial 
navy of the Northern American States by Southern pri- 
vateers. One gentleman stigmatized such proceedings as 
utterly disgraceful, and insisted that no nation should ever 
promote or even countenance nefarious attack on private 
property, and the consequent ruin of unarmed and non« 
belligerent parties. I was much amused when, on our 
way home from the repast, my friend informed me that 
the indignant denunciation of privateers was uttered by 
the possessor of the estate acquired by the capture of the 
Indiaman, thje grandson of the proprietor of the fortunate 

The religious tendencies of the people of St. Malo formed 
a very great contrast to those of the Parisians, In these 
pages I shall not intentionally introduce a word of a con- 
troversial or sectarian nature ; but I may remark, that 
whilst in the metropolis, public and private works and 
commercial avocations were unscrupulously pursued on 
Sundays; whilst the bricklayer, caq^enter, and slater, 
plied their trades, and numerous carts supplied them with 
building materials, the provincial town was as still and as 
quiet as the most rigorous observer of the Sabbath could 
require in our cities or towns. I went into St. Malo on 
A Sunday when the procession of Corpus Christi passed 
through the principal streets, and it appeared to me to 
produce amongst all classes most devotional effects. The 
thoroughfare was covered with freshly cut grass and short 
sprigs of evergreens. Young females dressed in white 
beaded the procession, carrying baskets of flowers, which 
they occasionally strewed, whilst flowers were abundantly 
thrown from almost every window. I firmly believe that 
demonstrations of any inclination to impede or offend the 
numerous sacerdotal functionaries engaged, would have 
excited the general populace to a very prompt and violent 
manifestation against the offenders. I feel equally con- 
vinced that any similar religious or ecclesiastical demon- 
stration in Paris could not pass throu^Vi «a^ ^Vt^^\. ^^ ^^bJv^ 

S94 Twenty Vsara^ Recollections. 

dty. It would be overwhelmed hf mob Tiolenee, not from 
its connection with any partipnlar creed, but f^oin the 
|wpular dislike to any form of religion whatever. 


Whilst at St, Malo I visited the tomb of a man, the 
great attributes of whose character, and the extraordinary 
incidents of whose life, have been recently made the sub- 
ject of a most interesting lecture, delivered by my truly 
learned friend, Professor Robertson, and published, amongst 
several others, by Mr. Kelly, of this city, I allude to 
Fran9ois-Ken6, Viscount de Chateaubriand^ who was bom 
at St. Malo in the year 1768, and during a life of eighty 
years witnessed the outbreak and many of the horrors of 
the French Revolution •; who had, for his personal safety, 
to undergo exile and penury, until his literary acquire- 
ments and productions procured for him the friendsliip 
and respect of strangers, and relieved him from indigence. 
Then, having been enabled to return to France, he pub- 
lished some romances, and also works of a serious descrip- 
tion, by which he acquired a high and lasting reputation. 
Subsequently, having travelled in Greece, Asia Minor, 
Syria, Palestine, Barbary, and Spain, he made the results 
of his travels the subject of a most interesting Itinerary. 
In 1821 he was sent us ambassador to Prussia, and in 
1822 was appointed to a similar office at the British Court* 
Towards the close of the reign of Louis the Eighteenth, 
he became the French Minister of Foreign A^rs, but did 
not continue long in office ; he died in 1848 at Paris, and 
his remains were conveyed to St. Malo. I have mentioned 
Chateaubriand as an illustrious and highly g;ifted man, 
and my readers will be greatly surprised when I add — fie 
sleeps in a nameless tomb. 

In his lifetime the municipality of St. Malo had, at hia 
request, granted a solitary rock in the bay of that seaport 
for his place of sepulture. There his coffin was deposited 
in a grave cut out of the solid stone, and surmounted by 
a granite cross, which marks the last resting-^lace of one 

Chateaubriand. 395 

whose reputation was far more than European. It bears 
the short and simple inscription of ^^ Here lies a Christian.*' 
{Ci gittm Chretien.) I believe, however, that the omission 
of the name has caused all who have seen the tomb to 
enquire who was its occupant, and has not tended to 
render him forgotten, or his memory unappreciated by Ym 

The foregoing notice of this celebrated native of St. Malo 
had scarcely been put in type when I received a copy of 
The Tablet newspaper, containing a communication from a 
French correspondent relative to the inauguration of a 
Chateaubriand memorial at St. Malo, on Sunday the 5th 
of September last. I presume to insert it in these pages, 
as strongly confirmini^ the opinions I have expressed, and 
being likely to please and interest the readei by its in- 
trinsic merits. 

'' A Statue to Chauteaubriand. — ^Yesterdav (Sondaj) the inanga^ 
ration of the Chateaubriand Memorial took place at Saint Malo. 
All the papers are fall of recollections of the aatbor of the Genie 
du Christianiame. Chateaubriand lived at a time when the evils of 
revolution had left the strongest emotions in all hearts. There 
was a drama in every man's life, a romance in every one's history. 
The very air was full of a floating, vague poetry of sufferings and 
regrets, and disappointed hopes, i^ature and misfortune combined 
to make Chateaubriand a poet. A dreamy, unhappy childhood 
heightened the sensitiveness of his feelings, and religion itseH was 
to him as poetry was — emotional. He saw his mother die, heard 
her last prayer for himself, the child of her affections, for his wel- 
fare, temporal and eternal. From that day he submitted to the 
Church^ dominion. * I wept,' be says, and * I believed.' He then 
travelled in America, and the ocean and tlie wilderness repealed 
to the young man a new kind of poetry. He went to Philadelphia 
to salute Washington. Subsequently he travelled into the far 
West. Returning to Europe, Chateaubriand endured the miseries 
of exile. That was the most unhappy part of his life. It was then 
that he commenced authorship. We next hear of him at the siegie 
of Verdun, on the surrender of which place he found himself with*> 
out resources. After many vicissitudes of fortune he reached 
London, and hetobk himself seriously to literary work. The re- 
mainder of his history is too well known to need recapitulation 
here ; I therefore return to the /Ste of yesterday. The town of 
Saint Malo is small but curious by reason of its sombre medieval 
aspect, its granite houses, its narrow, winding streets^ «!cA >&s^ 


896 Twenhf Ytart^ RecoUectioru. 

ahgence of irreeiierj — not a lawn nor a shrub beinj; yisible anywhere. 
Chateaabriand*8 native townsmen retain a lively recollection of 
him, and welcomed the day with enthusiasm. A lari^ number of 
stran^rers also paid their respects to the tomb of the author of 
Les Martyrs, The emotion was general when the procession 
reached the summit of the * Grand B^,' and came in sight of 
Chateaubriand*s monument Hiph above the waves was an in>n 
railing and a cross of stone, nothing more. Its simplicity was 
touching and effective. Chateaubriand perhaps yielded to a feeling 
of pride, in wishing to be baried thus on that elevated spot, wiih 
nothing in sight but the immensity of the heaven and the immen- 
sity of the oeean : — 

' Ccelum undique et undique pontus.* 

Be that as it may, the people of Saint Malo have done honor to 
themselves in honouring Chateaubriand. We may apply to him 
his own words about Bossuet,' His genius will stand like the mighty 
figure of Homer, always seen through the long vista of the ages. 
If sometimes it is obscured by the dust of a falling century, rhe 
cloud soon disperses, and there it is again in all its mi^jesty, only 
overlooking new ruins.' " 



On my return from France, I found that my son, Frank 
Thorpe, had accepted the appointment of medical officer 
in the Islands of Arran, which lie at the entrance of 
Gal way Bay ; and at his earnest desire, I proceeded to 
visit him, without the slightest expectation of deriving 
from the trip any pleasure, except that resulting from our 
meeting. On my journey, as I reverted to the scenes 
and associations which, in distant and foreign lands, had 
been almost invariably agreeable, I felt convinced that I 
was certain of finding, in the lonely insular locality to 
which I was going, the most striking contrasts. The pas- 
senger communication between Galway and Arran was 
effected by a sailing vessel of very moderate dimensions, 
but bearing the dignified appellation of ** The Yacht." She 
had one small cabin for the recegtion of all ranks, sexes. 

The Airan Islands. 397 

or ages ; and as the weather was neither wet nor cold, I 
preferred a seat astern, and having procured a reeling- 
line from one of the crew, amused myself bj capturing 
mackerel until I had acquired a couple of dozen. There 
were four lines in operation during a run of about thirty 
miles, and for five hours the catching of mackerel was in- 
cessant. The skipper said that the bay was swarming 
with them, but net-fishing was only followed in the vici- 
nity of Gal way town, as the transmission of large quanti- 
ties by sailing boats was considered extremely hazardous. 
If the capability of Gal way Bay for supplying enormous 
quantities of mackerel, herrings, and occasionally pil- 
chards, shall ever be made available, results may be 
obtained immensely advantageous to local interests, and 
most important to the general community. I may revert 
briefly to this subject whilst detailing some incidents of 
my sojourn amongst the Arran islanders. 

No traveller ever arrived in a locality to which he 
could be supposed to attach a more slender expectation of 
being gratified by what he might receive during his stay, 
than that felt by me at the commencement of my visit to 
Arran. I was impressed with a paramount idea, that I 
was to spend the time in a bleak, sterile region, and 
amongst a population destitute of almost every habitude 
or quality imparted by civilization. I could not possibly 
have formed a more erroneous opinion, for I never stood on 
any spot, in any of the islands, without having in view, 
whether near or distant, scenery sublimely picturesque ; 
and I found the people, without even an individual excep- 
tion, unpresuming, unobtrusive, civil, obliging, intelligenr, 
and industrious. The adults of both sexes generally in- 
dicate in their personal appearance the effects of constant 
manual labor, and of occasional privation, but they are 
mostly tall, vigorous, and active. Many of the youthful 
females are decidedly beautiful in features and figure, and 
there is no scarcity of very pretty children. The aggregate 
population of the three islands exceeds four thousand ; and 
although Irish is the language generally spoken, I did not 
meet with any who could not converse in English* SQ.W:^sk 

398 Ttventy Tears^ Recollections* 

eoiinected with tlie National Board of Education are nu- 
merously and regularly attended ; and although the gene- 
rality of the mFn and women appear to be attached to, 
and contented with the locality in which they live, there 
18 a great desire frequently expressed to qualify their pro- 
geny to engage in industrial pursuits or trading eniploj- 
ments elsewhere. 

There are no forest trees to be seen in any of the is- 
lands except a few stunted sycamores. I saw two or threq 
pear-trees, which had been planted close to walls, btt( 
their growth appeared to have been checked by the saline 
atmosphere and shallow soil, and they produced no fruit 
On the hills I found a great variety of indigenous flower- 
ing plants, which were very handsomCi and in the rocky 
dells there were several kinds of convolvulus of very rich 
florescence. The Madagascar Periwinkle seems to be per- 
fectly acclimated, and blossoms profusely;, and I was 
greatly surprised to find a very abundant growth of hops, 
the introduction of which is ascribed to the monks, by 
whom the numerous old ecclesiastical structures were 
formerly occupied. The tillage of the islands comprises 
potatoes, mangold-wurtzel, vetches, rape, clover, oats, and 
barley. The potatoes almost exclusively planted are 
round, white tubers, generally small, but numerous, and 
they are termed " Protestants.** A perfect stranger might 
be startled by hearing a direction given to put the Pro- 
testants on the fire, or to roast them in the glowing turf; 
but the proprietor of the Atlantic Hotel, in reply to an 
obsei-vation of mine, said that there was no oflTence inr 
tended, for they found the Protestants very paUuaMe. The 
tillage crops are sometimes greatly devastated by cater- 
pillars and grubs ; and I have frequently heard the abun- 
dance of those pernicious insects attributed to the great 
scarcity of sparrows and other small birds. Starlings are 
occasionally seen, but I never observed a swallow. Gulls 
and other marine birds are very numerous, amongst which 
the Ospray or sea-eagle is a conspicuous object. The 
raven, crow, rook, or jackdaw cannot be found.; but there 
fir a bird which I thou^Vvt ^x\.t«v!Rs\^ V-wA-wsova^ very nu- 

The Arran hhanfUi 899 

merouS) especially in the North Island. It is: tbe ChougJt^ 
^vrhich^in addition to plumage dark oniid glo883K,.like that of 
the jackdawy dispiajsi a. beak amd legsc of Ixri^t scarlets 
It i9 said that this bird was formearly to be. seen' in floeks 
at yarious plaoea on the English coaAt,. espedally Dqyot 
cMS^ and that now, it cannot be &>und in aey' part of the 
United Kingdom except the Amaffi' Islandis. I should re^ 
gret itSi extinctions for I kokow- it to be. handsome^ and it is 
reputed to be hatrmless. 

I recollect reading, altbontgh I am- unable to specify- in 
what work, that frogs were not indigenous to; Ireland^ li 
was stated that in the reign of Elizabeth^ a. person con* 
j)ectejd with the University of Dublin^ then recently^ estab^ 
Ivshed,, brought, from En^nd a crock or jar of frog 
spawn, which, he emptied into a diteh at Beggars' Bush, 
near Dublin,, and that in hia importation our present com# 
m unity of {unphibious croakess> and jumpers- originated; 
The probability of thi$ statem^:it, is. strengthened \vj the 
fact, that froga are not to be seeni in the< Arran Islands* 

I believe that there is not a salmon fishery in Great 
Britain or Ireland Of^ore abundant thani th» one at Galway* 
i have there: seen from tjbe bridge the fidb in sucht nombers 
^ \ should have considered incredible if descsihed. Thesa 
myriads of salmon entered Qalway Bay from the Atlantic^ 
and passing the ifilands,, proceeded about thirty miles to the 
river where they appeared in suiob enormous quaiUdtieai 
I therefore think that I should mentiioD' a most extraor^ 
dinary fact, that wliiilst I was at Arran, I saw^ in & mom^ 
ing stroll, five men drawing a seine net at the entrance to 
KiJiTonan harboujtr. They %Qck some; herrings, a £ew fiat 
fish of various kinds, some whiting, some poUock,»and a 
salmon of about twelve pounds weight. I was desirous of 
purchasing the latter, and they readily sold, it to me for 
two shillings ; but they all aasured me that they did not 
know what kind offish it was> and tisat they, had never 
seen one before. 

The quantity of land capable of tillage in each island 
ia y^ry limited, and consequently affords employment only 
to 1^, sm^llf portioQ of the population. Fishing VPLth%V^^>k 


400 Twenty Tears' Recollections. 

with boats rather' poorly equipped, or drawing seine nets 
in the creeks and entrance of the harbour, and cleaning 
and drying the produce, are followed by many during the 
favorable weather ; but the principal employment of a 
yery considerable number of both sexes is gathering of 
the seaweed, and converting it into kelp by calcination. 
I believe that all other industrial occupations are of trivial 
importance to the Arran people compared with the pro- 
duction of kelp. The capability of Galway Bay to be 
made a fishing station of immense importance has never 
been denied ; it can produce an abundance of the choicest 
piscatory delicacies, and frequently becomes, through its 
entire extent, replete with mackerel or herrings. I ven- 
ture to express an opinion, that the greatest obstacle to 
the development of such advantages is to be found in 
the feeling of indifference, perhaps I might use a stronger 
term, on the part of the people belonging to the various 
adjoining localities, to each other. I have heard, in Arran, 
frequent expressions of contempt for the Connemara 
fishermen, of dislike to the Clare people, and of utter 
detestation of those belonging to the Claddagh at Galway. 
On two occasions, in the South of England, I saw a great 
fleet of boats, comprising vessels from Cornwall, Devon- 
shire, Hampshire, and Kent, co-operating amicably and 
efficiently in surrounding a shoal of mackerel or pilchards. 
On narrating these occurrences to some Arran fishermen, 
I was told '' it would be impossible to bring about such a 
state of things there ; and that, even if others became 
agreeable, the Claddagh fellows would rather sail through 
the nets of other fishermen than join in taking as much as 
would fill every boat." 

Whilst I was at Arran some cases occurred of severe 
typhus fever. There is no hospital in any of the islands. 
The habitations are, with three or four exceptions, 
thatched, and without any upper story. The invariable 
course adopted was to nail up the door of the patient's 
apartment, to take out the sashes of a window, and render 
it the sole means of external communication. The medical 
attrndant, clergy, audnui^^X^ii^^T^V^^^ia vk\V<»i means of 

Circuit Beminiscences. 401 

ingress or egress, and I never heard any objection made 
to the system. My son contracted the disease, and al- 
though ten days elapsed before a medical gentleman 
arrived from Gal way, he surmounted the fearful malady. 
I spent each night in his apartment, and during the day 
he was tended by a nurse. Almost every night I heard 
some gentle taps outside of the vacant window, and on 
going to it I would be told, " My wife is afther making a 
pitcher of whay fur the poor docthur ; you'll find it on 
the windy stool," or " I brought you two jugs of milk, to 
make whay fur yer son ; they're on the windystool." 
When the crisis had passed, and nutriments or stimulants 
were required, I would be told, ** We biled down two 
.chickens into broth for the docthur,! hope that it will sarve 
him." Rabbits, chickens, and joints of kid were tendered 
for his use, and even a bottle of **xale Connemara potteen" 
was deposited on the window-stool. The people were all 
kind and anxious ; and when he became able to walk out, 
he was cordially saluted and congratulated, but no person 
would approach him if they could avoid it. They were all 
dreadfully apprehensive that he might impart the direful 
contagion. I brought him home as soon as possible, but he 
and I will always remember most gratefully the unvary- 
ing kindness and sympathy we experienced in Arran. 


Some friends of the Leinster Circuit have suggested that 
a few descriptive notices of my personal recollection of 
scenes in court, convivial evenings at the Bar-mess, or 
other amusing incidents of the period between 1827 and 
1840, during which time I had attended every Assize 
Court held in Wicklow, Wexford, Waterford, Kilkenny, 
and Tipperary, might not be unacceptable. The subject 
is one in which the pleasures of memory are mingled with 
numerous regrets ; for of all those whose learning and 
talents excited my respect and admiration, or whose wit 
and conversational powers rendered their society invari- 
ably delightful, very few remair. CM \\i^ V^i^^^^ ^^^KNs^lug| 

403 Twentjf Tears' RecoOteHans. 

remember, I considered Chief Baron O'Gradj (subse- 
quently created Lord Guillamore) the most amusing publio 
functionary that I ever had seen. He came our circait 
but once during my time. At Wicklow he presided in 
the Crown Court ; and amongst the cases for trial there 
were four or five for sheep- stealing, and they were all 
convicted. Sheep*farming was at that time so prevalent 
in Wicklow, and considered so important by the class of 
persons who were summoned as jurors, that an accusa- 
tion of sheep-stealing almost invariably eventuated in con- 
viction. Towards the close of the assizes, a member of 
the Militia band then stationed at Arklow was put forward 
for trial on an indictment for the manslaughter of a com- 
rade, whom he had killed with his sword on a sudden 
altercation. The case appeared fully to warrant a convic- 
tion, but the jury, without even retiring, acquitted the 
prisoner. Mr. Scott, the senior counsel for the crovrn, 
expressed an indignant disapproval of the verdict, upon 
which the Chief Baron observed, ^* Mr. Scott, the prisoner 
is not yet discharged, and you can get a conviction imme- 
diately if you only indict him for sheep-stealing,** When 
we proceeded to Wexford, the Chief Baron, as Kecord 
Judge, liad but two short cases to try, and when they 
were disposed of, he engaged in the trial of criminals. A 
woman named Hester Carroll, who had been for some 
time a pest and disgrace to the town of Enniscorthy, was 
put forward, charged with a robbery of a gold viratch and 
chain, and upwards of twenty pounds, from a farmer, 
who had become intoxicated in her society. She was 
found guilty, and when the verdict was announced, a 
sergeant of constabulary, who had been the principal 
means of her detection, advanced to the table in the 
Kecord Court where she was standing, to take away various 
articles which had been found in her possession ; where- 
upon she sprang at him, tore his face fearfully, and bit 
his hand very severely. When she was disengaged from 
her intended victim, and held so as to prevent further 
violence, the Chief Baron pronounced the sentence of the 
court in term3 vrhich. s^^m^d. xq \si^ ^^^ ^\.\v^s^ of his 

Circuit iteminiicences. 408 

hearers to be aw imitation, in style and asaumed solemnity, 
of that incident to a capital offence. After some prelimi- 
nary observations On the heinous nature of her crime, and 
the certainty of her guilt, and the tendency of her conduct 
in court to prevent any mitigation of punishment, he con- 
<;luded in the following words — **The sentence of the 
court is that you, Hester Carroll, shall be taken from the 
place where you now stand, to the gaOl from whence yoti 
•were brought, and from thence that yon shall be trans- 
ported for the term of seven years to such penal settlement 
or colony as his Majesty'* government may direct, and 
may God have mercy upon those who shall have to manage 
you there." 

A prisoner was tried before him at Wexford on am 
indictment for highivay robbery^ and although the evi- 
dence amounted to a strong probability of bis guilt, the 
verdict was an acquktal. Richard Newton Bennett, who 
defended the prisoner, immediately applied to the Chief 
Baron to- order the man to be liberated, to which the other 
replied, ** He will be discharged from custody, Mr. Bennett^ 
to-morrow at noon. I shall set out for Waterford in the 
morning, and I wish to have a couple of hours fiftart of 
your client.** 

In my early professional days the law in reference to 
injuries to growing crops of vegetables was very imperfect, . 
and although taking potatoes, turnips, &e. out of the 
owner's ground was considered a very serious trespass, the 
offence could not be treated as actual larceny. Some pro- 
ceedings at Waterford, in reference to the abstraction of 
turnips, were held to be insufficient to sustain an indict- 
ment, and a deputation of the Grand Jury sought a con^ 
ference w^ith Chief Baron O'Grady on the subject. One 
of them asked his Lordship if the delinquents could be 
made liable to punishment under the lYwftcr Act, to which 
he gravely replied, " Certainly not, unless yoti can prove 
that the turnips were sticki/" 

Charles Kendal Bushe had been a member of the Lein^ 
ster Bar; and when he had attained the distin^iu&lNft.^ 
position of Chief Justice, he frequcntX'j %€^^QXftAL\x^^^s«ais^j 

404 TwetUy Teart^ BeeoUecHons. 

circuit as a Judge of Assize. Amongst the members of 
the Bar he was not merely respected and admired, but 
beloved. Portly in his personal appearance, he was dig- 
nified without ostentation, witty without sarcasm, learnt 
without pedantry, and his judicial duties were discharged 
with impartiality, patience, kindness, and humanity. 
Kilkenny was his native county, and amongst the gentry 
of that place his family had been long established. The 
judges on circuit usually invite two or three barristers to 
dinner daily in each town ; and I had the very agreeable 
honor of being an occasional guest of Chief Justice Busbe. 
I recollect a conversation relative to the criminal calendars 
of that time compared with those of the previous century. 
The Chief Justice said that the name of his family had 
been introduced into the charge of a judge to the Grand 
Jury of Kilkenny, about the year 1760, in terms far from 
complimentary. There were then organised bands or 
gangs of freebooters, who plundered and maltreated tbe 
proprietors and tenants of estates, unless a certain subsidy, 
called rapparee rent, or blackmail, was paid for their for- 
bearance, and concealment and subsistence afforded when- 
ever required. He said that the Agar family, (pronounced 
HJager,) the Floods, and the Bushes had become contribu- 
tory to the marauders, and sheltered them from capture. 
Eumours of such an arrangement having been circulated, 
it was alluded to by Baron Dawson telling the Grand 
Jury of Kilkenny that their county was eager for prey, 
flooded with iniquity, and that every 6tisA sheltered a knave. 

Having given the Chief Justice's anecdote in reference 
to three names, I may mention that my own name has 
not passed scotfree. At our Bar-mess, the Hon. Patrick 
Plunket was one evening insisting that I should sing a 
particular song. I begged to be excused, but he perse- 
vered, and continued exclaiming, " Porter ! Porter ! '* I said 
that *' although I was ^ Porter/ he should not make a buU 
of me." He replied, " I don't want to make a hutt of you, 
I only wish to get a stave out of you," 

Judge Torrens often came on our circuit, and generally 
dined twice at the bai-me^&x ooft ^\T>cck!£t X^^so^^ <he custo- 

Circuit Reminiscences, 405 

mary banquet given by the Bar to the judges at Kilkenny, 
and the other being by special invitation at Clonmel. He 
vras always desirous on such convivial occasions of obtain- 
ing some vocal contributions, especially of a comic charac^ 
ter. His favorite song wafe " The Wedding of Bally ^oreeli.'* 
He was Judge of the Record Court hi Gionmel in 1833^ 
and immediately after taking his sielat at the commehb^mett 
of the Assizes^ was applied to by the late Mr. Brewster to 
fix a day for the trial of a *eaise, the ^rties to which, and 
their witnesses, had to come from the most distant part of 
the country, namely, Ballyporeeui The Judg0 made the 
order sought, saying, in a playful tone, " Is Mr. Porter 
engaged in this Ballyporeen case?" "No, toy Lord," 
replied Brewstei^ " I regret that I hi£tv6 not the assistance 
of my learned friend." 

" Most unquestionably," said his Lordship, " hii ought 
to be in it." 

There were somd attomi^ys prese;it who heard his re- 
mark, but they were not Aware of the origin of his Suggest 
lion. Perhaps they ascribed it to a very favorable opinion 
of my professional capacity, or to a feeling of personal 
friendship; but I found it subsequently productive of 
several record-briefs, which I might truly say were ob- 
tained " for a song." 

In I83G, the Attorney-General (Richards) appointed 
me to a Crovm prosecutorship on the circuit. In the 
afternoon of a day next before the opening of the Assize^ 
of Clonmel, in 1838, I was sitting and noting a brief^ 
whilst about a dozen more were lying on my table, when 
I was informed that a gentleman wished me to grant him 
an interview. Acceding to his request, 1 desired the ser^ 
vant to show him up, and I immediately perceived that he 
was an ecclesiastic. I profferried him a chair, and he pro- 
ceeded to inform me that he was the Rev. Mr. Coony, a 
Catholic curate in a parish the name of Which ha^ escaped 
my memory ; but it was near Clonmel. He was young, 
and zealous in advancing the religious interests of the 
flock with which he had recently become connected^ ^X2>.^ 
stated it was much to be tegretted HcaX ^^ ^^^ikss^^ Ocns^^j^ 

406 Twenty Ytari lUcoUections. 

of his parish was so completely out of repair as to require 
almost a total renovation. That he had been encouraged 
by the character he had heard of me to appeal to mj gene- 
rous and charitable disposition for a subscription towards 
rendering the church suitable and safe for bis numerous 
poor parishioners. I was inclined at the time to have a 
little fun with his reverence, and said, << Well, sir, when 
you have your church repaired, I suppose you will make 
it as available as possible to the religious and moral im- 
provement of your people." 

" Certainly, sir ; we shall endeavour to do so." 

''You will urge them to abstain from fighting and 
killing each other, from administering unlawful oaths, 
serving threatening notices, burning houses, houghing 
cattle, or plundering firearms, and even from excessive 

" Assuredly, sir, it will be our duty to do so,** 

'' So you come to me, to persuade me to cut the ground 
from under my own feet, by subscribing to further your 
acknowledged intentions. I am a prosecuting counsel on 
this circuit, and on the table before you I have a profitable 
assortment of murders, conspiracies, and attempts to mur- 
der, abductions, threatening notices, and faction-fights. 
You would render my vocation worthless by inculcating 
the observance of law and order, quietude, and temperance. 
It would be much more reasonable that I should be asked 
to subscribe to a society for the' distribution of blunder- 
busses and pistols." 

" Oh !" exclaimed the astonished priest, " may heaven 
grant that I shall never again hear such expressions from 
human lips." 

" Well," said I, " suppose we effect a compromise. 
You expected to get a pound from me. Will you let 
the poor Crown prosecutor off for half-a-sovereign ?" 

" Mr. Porter," said he, "I now feel convinced that you 
were jesting; for, if you really felt as you spoke, you 
would not give me a farthing." 

I gave him the half-sovereign. We walked together to 
'' The Ormond," wVieie 'Wfe "W^^ «oTaa \:^s«sv>S.^& wid wine, 
and parted on most imu.dVj \.Qxm^. 

Circuit Reminiscences. 

For a considerable time previous to my retirement from 
the Leinster Bar we had a junior member of that body 
whose name it is unnecessary to mention fully. He had 
been the adjunct or drudge of an attorney-general, and 
was consequently known amongst us by the designation 
of "Tom the Devil." I have heard that in his earlier 
years he had been a midshipman on board the " Orwell," 
a splendid ship belonging to the East India Company, and 
that for some special service which he undertook and ac- 
complished under most dangerous circumstances, the Di- 
rectors had allotted him a reward of one thousand guineas, 
on the acquirement of which he returned home to Ireland, 
and applied himself to the legal profession. He was 
greatly liked amongst us, and none relished bis society 
more than I did. He frequently became my chum on 
circuit, and on one occasion, at Clonmel, he asked me to 
convey, in reference to a personal quarrel, the most liberal 
oft'er perhaps ever made to an adversary. There was an 
individual whose conduct and character were by no means 
questionable, as they were fully ascertained to be tho- 
roughly disreputable, and he came to our lodgings whilst 
I was ordering breakfast. He was accompanied by ano- 
ther person who had been concerned, as a second in a 
recent hostile meeting, and he stated that he wished to 

have an interview with Mr. ^ meaning my chum, 

" Tom the Devil,*' who was still in bed in a small adjoin- 
ing room, I went to the door and said, "Tom, here is 

Mr. , who wants to see you." He jumped up, and 

without adding any other garment to his night-shirt, put 
his feet in his slippers and entered the sitting-room ; then 
turning to the applicant he said, " What do you want with 

" Mr. W. ," was the reply, " I have been informed 

that on several occasions you have insinuated various 
matters prejudicial to my character, personal and profes- 
sional ; and I deemed it necessary to have a direct expla- 
nation as to whether you have expressed such injurious 

Tom replied, " You have been aLto^<^\»\i^x \ii\^a&sstw!>&^ . 

408 TwcU§ Ttanf JSBco&csiina^ 

I em fokmnlj aftnn, izudeed I can si5±iJT swuz^ 
I nerer breathed anj nni i f<rfifw i wfm&Tgr rc^s^zcsif jm.^ 
The ocber bowed and seemed eridecclj zraniSed. bos Toil 
ecmtmiied, ** I admit that I ba^e spokds. c£ joo, bm tttl 
iodirectlj. I hare not hmted or issxuzicefL but pl^nJ^I 
iitated thai I ooosidexedjoa a low, iiw*ar. izzcrazitf petfr 
fogging blackguard. That is my expfaraninn : andnov, 
sir, if joo will onlj wait imCil I draw on bcots^ I dtaft ' 
fed much pkasaie in kicking joa down stairs^'* 

I stepped forward, and implored the interrcgatzng pntj 
and his friend to retire. I said that the apartooiais vis 
mine, and that I wonld not allow aaj fbztfaer ahercatka 
there. I sooceeded in getting them awaj, and then I sud 
to my candid chum, ^'This is a most unpleasant a£ur 
to occur in my presence. It may be highly injnrioiB 
to me, for it will produce a challenge and a hostile meet- 

^ He wont fight,'* obserred Tom. They are gone down 
the street, and as you are dressed, slip on your hat, and 
follow them. Tell the rascal to make no foither row here, 
but to start at once foi Mllford, where Fll meet him. Tell 
him that my brother gave me forty pounds yesterday, and 

if he lights me I'll give him twenty, and, by , rUpay 

for his funeral into die bargain.^ 

I declined carrying this liberal offer. I may add that 
there was no challenge sent, and the party against whom 
there had been no insinuation immediately retired from 
the profession. I cannot call to mind any further remi- 
niscences connected with the Leinster Circuit. I regret 
that, whilst 1 was a member of it, I did not keep a regular 

In the foregoing pages I have mentioned occurrences 
and personal observations incident to my sojourns in 
France, Germany, Spain, and England. In all the cities 
which I visited, I found the people by no means in- 
different to the reputation of their respective localities, or 
disposed to impress strangers with the opinion, that they 
had arrived in a place ^laate N>3^^^xiX.l^^i^'OTi<is.t^^md 

Conclusion. 409 

^ brutal violence habitually prevailed; and where to the 
, worst and most appalling crimes there had been publicly 
1 accorded 

** A local habitation and a name. 


It would seem specially reserved for Dublin, my native 
city, to record by public inscriptions, and to insert in the 
list of our metropolitan thoroughfares, that within the 
municipal precincts there may be found a Cow-parlouk, 
a PiGTowN, a Cheater's Lane, a Stoneybatter, a Cut- 
throat Lane, and a Murdering Lane. It may be said 
that these places are mostly of small dimensions, but they 
appear in Thorn's Official Directory in the same type, and 
fully as conspicuous to the eye of a stranger as the most 
populous and important of our streets or squares. Within 
my memory Skinner Row has been metamorphosed into 
Christchurch Place, Dirty Lane has become Bridgefoot 
Street, half of Exchequer Street has been converted into 
Wicklow street, and French Street has been elevated into 
Upper Mercer Street. Surely the same authority that 
effected such alterations ought to substitute other names 
for those which cannot be retained without continuing to 
impute to our city that it contains places specially appro- 
priated to low, vulgar, dishonest, and sanguinary practices. 
During my tenure of magisterial office I found the city of 
Dublin capable of very favorable comparison with any 
other place of similar extent and population ; and I con- 
sider the names to which I have referred most unjustifiably 
false and defamatory. The designation of one of our 
bridges has lately been changed, and it is to be henceforth 
made conducive to the memory of Grattan. The motives 
of those who proposed such an alteration were undoubtedly 
patriotic and praiseworthy ; but identifying the truly illus- 
trious orator and statesman with a bridge across the LifPey, 
will not, in the present state of the river, tend to keep his 
name in good odour. 

Since my return home I have lived in such retirement 
and quietude that I cannot refer to atk^ mc)yi<^\i\»\iQ't.'Oo.>l ^^^^fl 


410 Twenty Twrf Bsdollectiona. 

insertion in these pages. In concluding these *^ Recollec- 
tions," I have to assure my readers that I hav^ dedulously 
endeavoured to minister to their information or amuse^ 
nient. If I have succeeded, their approval will impart 
great happiness to the closing years of my life ; and having 
done my utmost, I trust that they will accord' me a favor- | 
able criticism, for which I shall be deeply jgrateful. 

PoRTBOUS AMD Gi&BS, 'PimX«T%» x% 'WvdA!C3W-«ite«Q!t« Dublin. 

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|l0unb f ofetrs of |re(anir, 

To which was awarded the Gold Medal and Frize of the 

Boydl Irish Academy, 




This is admittedly one of the most valuable contri- 
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and contains Two Hundred and Fifty-six Illus- 


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Donnellan Lectures for tie Tear 1877. 

Delivered in Trmity CoUege, Dublin.